Bob Hagarty, CEO of Polycom at Telepresence World

5 06 2007

Bob Hagarty, CEO of Polycom, kicked off Telepresence World by explaining that leaders need to be connected more than ever in today’s business environment, yet face ever increasing communications challenges due to increasingly complex corporate structures.

Reflecting on his own travel schedule as a CEO, he said it felt pretty cool to become a million-mile flyer, but 2 million, then 3 million miles didn’t seem nearly as cool. It’s often the case that travel time can be better spent connecting with people in more places using telepresence solutions rather than traveling to fewer.

Bob Haggarty, CEO of Polycom

Hagarty explained that today’s business environment is more distributed than ever, with 90% of corporation’s employees working at locations other than the home office. Additional challenges on leadership communications include off-shoring, M&A, global supply chain’s mobility, distributed work teams, and strategic partnering. All create distance barriers that hurt operating productivity and slow business growth.

Telepresence allows leaders to lead in more places and be involved in more critical decisions. This substantially increases company alignment and executive visibility while lowering the bar of accessibility to current issues out in the field.

Unfortunately, most remote corporate communications to date have been one-sided mandates from headquarters rather than 2-way communications that give executives the real-world intelligence they need to make better decisions. Telepresence systems create a high performance workplace capable of generating faster decision making, increased agility and response times, de-serialized workflows, and collaborative decision making.

Communications are at their best when you have nods, facial expressions, etc., that let people know how people feel about what you’re saying and when they want to speak.

Polycom’s Immersive Telepresence systems are, “Not just a window into a remote room, but actually another room.”

Effective telepresence solutions have to play nice by sticking to accepted standards and integrate with company wide collaboration solutions and telecommuncations systems to increase compatibility.

via [technology evangelist]

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