Another interesting take on working remotely can be found at Smarterware’s post on Jonathan Wilson’s set-up – use Skype and VNC to create a “presence” in the office. In Jonathan’s words:
I still have my computer at work, in my office cube (right in the middle of things). I set up a webcam there along with speakers. I have second cam at home, and I simply Skype in to my own cube at work. Skype can be configured to auto-answer, if desired, so my ‘cube’ Skype simply picks up when I dial in … for hours at a time.
I also pipe my home desktop onto my cube’s monitor (using VNC). This combination is very close to actually being there in the cube. People walk right up to my cube and talk to me, just like they do when I’m in the office. Because my code’s up on the screen, we can work through issues there at my desk just like normal. Similarly, people glancing at my screen can see exactly what I’m doing (coding), so there’s never a question of whether I’m actually doing my work from home.
I can ‘overhear’ the dev conversations in the cubes around me (just like when I’m in the office), and even pipe in. My coworkers and managers are quite used to it and its become completely natural. After trying many different things, this is, by far, the best approach I’ve come across.
Jonathan works with very tech-savvy people (he is a software developer), so the warm-up period probably was shorter for his team than it would be in the average law firm or in-house counsel office. Nonetheless, it is a very interesting solution to the problem of collaborating with others over the distances. Cool work-around, Jonathan!
The Studio is taking a techie-geeky side-road detour and is offering this great podcast / interview called “The Internet At 40”. Included are interviews with John Naughton, Professor of the Public Understanding of Technology at the Open University and author of ‘A brief history of the future – the origins of the internet’ and a newly recorded interview with Rodney Harrison, lecturer in Heritage Studies at the Open University, talking about Second Life and virtual communities. The cast is conducted by radio journalist Penny Boreham. Hit the jump here for the recording – it’s fascinating.
Webinars provide professionals with yet another means of communicating their expertise and offering information – the life-blood of the on-line world – to an internet audience. LLRX has a good overview of the webinar experience penned by Wells Anderson called Marketing Yourself with Webinars. For those unfamiliar, a webinar is a hybrid concoction: one part teleconference and one part on-screen slide presentations via Powerpoint or another slidesharing service. Attendees sign up, access through a webinar conference number and can simultaneously hear the conference via phone and view the slides via the computer.
There are many good reasons for using webinars to promote your brand and business and Mr. Anderson highlights them well in the article. For me, a webinar reminds your webinar audience, as well as those who view promotion of the webinar, of your professional web presence, setting you in the role of educator and expert and offering proof of your web-savvy nature.
Anderson advises using subscription service GoToMeeting from Citrix Online for webinar hosting, promising a straight-forward and easy-to-use experience. I found their product GoToWebinar. Creating your webinar should be no different than the process of creating a live seminar presentation.
But the key to a successful webinar is proper promotion. Use existing contacts, your blog and services like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other venues offering a broader audience for your presentation promotion.
If you are committed to marketing your practice using modern on-line methods, webinars are a great addition to your Web 2.0 strategy and branding. Use them at regular intervals to sharpen your own presentation technique and remind the Web why you are the go-to guy or gal in your particular field.
Check out a video review of GoToWebinar above for more information about webinars in general and this product in particular.