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Keeping in Tune: Simpler Collaboration From Any Device

Cisco Employee

Did you know that the Guns N’ Roses anthem Sweet Child O’ Mine was originally written as a practice guitar riff?

A friend told me this as I recently struggled to play it, making sounds closer to ‘chopsticks’ than to one of the most famous guitar tracks ever created.

The fact that I was playing a borrowed guitar may have made it more difficult, though. Playing a familiar instrument is so much easier, if only because you know its foibles!

The same is true of many of the smartphones, tablets, phablets (I have one – it is fab!), and other devices that we use every day.  Using a device that’s very familiar – where I know the controls, how to get the best experience, and don’t need to think too hard to use it – makes things much easier and less stressful.

When I join meetings, I don’t want to work out how to use a new and different system. How to mute (and unmute!) myself. Or how to see any content being shared?

If you typically work from an office environment like I do, having a desktop endpoint on your desk makes the experience so much easier. It’s yours, you know how it works, and it’s as familiar as a standard phone once was (back in the MTV heyday of Axl Rose).

And when you can’t be at your desk for a particular meeting, being able to join from whatever device you have at hand – your smartphone, for instance – takes away the stress. With WebEx support for Cisco TelePresencevideo meetings rolled out in EMEA earlier this year, and the Jabber client for iPhone and Android, options are available. No special equipment required.

Now my colleagues and I can join meetings from a whole range of devices. I can get great, business-quality video in the office, and still be able to join meetings while on the move. I can choose when and how I connect. And not having to learn a new set of controls for each device makes everything so much easier. I can focus on the meeting itself, rather than how to join and how to make the technology work.

For more tips about online meetings, read Angie Mistretta’s great post “Surviving the Conference Call.” In it, she characterizes different caller personalities. Are you a hoarder?  I certainly am! And I’m talking to a Cruncher as I write this. (But don’t tell him I mentioned it.)

This is my very first blog for Cisco.  And as we build up to Cisco Live starting on May 18th, I’m looking forward to my second ever visit to the fabulous city of San Francisco.  And maybe borrowing a guitar

What are your experiences with moving between devices for online meetings?

Or, if you have any suggestions about how I can improve my renditions of “Sweet Child O’ Mine,” please share!

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