One of the most outdated, but oddly persistent, myths about the video conferencing industry is the “executive myth:” that video conferencing is meant only for Fortune 500 executives and other high-powered captains of industry. In this post, we’ll take a look at how this myth came to be, and how changes in video conferencing technologies have rendered it increasingly obsolete.
Where did this myth even come from?
To find the origin of this “executive myth,” we need to look back at the early days of video conferencing, when systems were almost strictly room-based set-ups, heavily reliant on site-specific hardware and boasting price tags hefty enough to make even the wealthiest company executive think twice. Back then, the big selling point of these video conferencing goliaths was that they enabled boardroom-style meetings between two fixed endpoints – something that would appeal almost strictly to an executive-level customer base. Compounding this issue was the fact that, once the unit had been installed (by expert IT administrators, naturally) and supported (by specially trained staff, also naturally), these executives didn’t exactly want to turn over the keys to their fancy new status symbol to the rank and file. For a generation of office workers, the video conferencing system was a look-but-don’t-touch piece of equipment they rarely – if ever – had even the slightest access to.
Why it’s time to bury the executive myth
Fast forward a decade and a half and the idea of the executive-only video conferencing unit is outdated. Like the mobile phone before it (which went from a symbol of Gordon Gekko 1980s excess to a ubiquitous piece of office equipment in about the same timeframe), video conferencing is now the well within the reach of even the smallest organizations – and if you’re not already embracing the technology, it’s time to start.
So what fueled this rapid change? The rise of virtualization and cloud computing have made it so expensive hardware-driven video conferencing units aren’t an organization’s only option anymore, and in fact, there are a range of solutions to fit almost any need. Virtual video conferencing infrastructure can be implemented in much the same way as room-based systems are, but without the upfront cost or the need for a special client-side support staff, and WebRTC options offer reasonably high-definition video communication through browser windows. Additionally, mobile solutions give iOS, Android and Windows Phone users even more flexibility in regards to where and how they can access video.
It’s a brave new video conferencing world out there, one that’s expanding every day; not only is the executive myth a thing of the past, but high-powered and affordable new video conferencing options coming to market every day. Want to learn more about how this new technology, and how users in your industry are leveraging the power of video? Then click here to read our whitepaper, “Video Conferencing Is Not Just for Executives!”