In today’s quickly changing market, more and more work is done virtually and collaboratively. Tools constantly change. But core skills guarantee success. Are your skills up to par?

Anytime, anywhere. Virtual collaboration is the way of the future. It’s the secret to unlock tremendous productivity with global partners, distance teams, and even co-workers down the hall.

Yet, there is a single flaw in this logic. As communication technology increases, it does not replace the single element of success: confidence. Presentation skills training is a essential to achieve total confidence for global communication.

Personal confidence is the mark of a successful professional and accomplished leader. With presentation skills training, in combination with virtual technology, your organization will improve performance—and gain competitive ground.

Relying on a purely technology solution is not likely to unlock true success. Many organizations are finding this, while you read this article. They’ve spent a fortune on cutting edge communication technology. But much of the software is still in boxes. And the ‘game-changing’ tools are gathering dust.

If you’ve been in business long enough, you’ve seen this time and again. The promise of technology is irresistible. You need it to stay at the top of your industry. You must have it to be leading the game, instead of drowning in the backwaters of yesteryear.

But, if you’ve been around for a while, you know exactly what happens. In the spirit of advancement, funds are allocated for equipment and technology. But without the accompanying presentation skills trainings, teams drag their feet.

Now, you have a different problem. The CFO wants to know why the game-changing solution is not changing the bottom line.

If your organization has already invested in cutting-edge technology, it is common sense that you must help people gain comfort and confidence in using it. Here are 5 tips to take on the challenge: whether you’ve purchased video conferencing equipment, virtual collaboration tools, or the latest in enterprise communication tools.

1. Support Real-Time Social Interactions
While working virtually is the name of the game, more and more people want real-time contact. This means that collaborating with remote partners should simulate the effectiveness of a face-to-face work environment.

One of the big challenges is to create informal conversations—much as you would when dropping into a colleague’s office. To achieve this, encourage employees to have unscheduled interactions. Simulate the real-time human-to-human connection people love so much.

2. Create Cross Generational Benefits
Research from Frost & Sullivan shows that 45% of Baby Boomers believe meetings are effective. However, only 29% of Gen Y employees believe that meetings are efficient to decide on a course of action.

By encouraging experimentation and exploring real-time collaboration, your cross generational team can find the best ways to make decisions. Watch out for creating solutions that only appeal to one portion of your workforce.

3. Encourage One-On-One Interaction
Stay flexible and ready to get input from colleagues and co-workers. Encourage people to ask for input and make decisions. Much as participants would ask a team member or manager for input, do the same in a virtual environment.

4. Inform and Include
Agree on what works best for your team—before you’re in the thick of complex projects. Decide in advance who must know, who must be informed, and who must be included.

Waiting until ‘it happens’ is a recipe for disaster.

5. Encourage Video Conferencing
Employees are more and more used to video interactions in their personal lives. If you are not using video conferencing in your business, people feel that the absence of this important tool.

Business problem solving and troubleshooting are easier and faster when participants see each other. In addition, make sure that you can use a whiteboard or dry erase board that everyone can see. If you don’t have this capability within your enterprise communication, go low-tech.

Roll up your sleeves and put up a whiteboard or flipchart. Make sure that everyone can see what you are sketching. Use this to create a lively interaction during a video conference.

Virtual communication, interactive problem solving and collaborative conversations are the way of the future. Advances in technology will make whiteboards increasingly easy to use. While this will make a profound difference in how we conduct business, there is no need to wait until tomorrow.

Doing great things starts today. By building your confidence in presentation skills, you’ll be in the best position—today, and in the future.

Author's Bio: 

Milly Sonneman is a recognized expert in visual language. She is the co-director of Presentation Storyboarding, a leading presentation training firm, and author of the popular guides: Beyond Words and Rainmaker Stories available on Amazon. Milly helps business professionals give winning presentations, through Email Marketing skills trainings at Presentation Storyboarding. You can find out more about our courses or contact Milly through our website at: