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Webinars: The 21st Century Way to Train

Webinars Offer the Power of Learning -- Without Being There!

by David Newman, Vice President, Business 21 Publishing

With the ever-increasing demands on your time, the last thing you have room for in your schedule is professional development, right? Wrong! Professional-strength training is available as close as your nearest telephone and PC using the latest in audio conferencing. It's easy, affordable, and effective.

Audio conferences are electronic meetings where participants call in from different locations and listen to a speaker, or group of speakers, who are experts in their topic areas.

Audio conferences are interactive, meaning that participants can ask questions in real time. They are considered the most cost-effective form a training because:
1) you can invite as many colleagues as you'd like to listen in on a single phone line;
2) you incur no travel expenses; and
3) employees are back at work immediately after the session ends.

How do audio conferences work? When you register for a conference, you receive an 800 number and a PIN number. About five minutes before the conference is to begin, you dial the 800 number, then you'll be asked to enter the PIN number followed by the pound key. An operator will then patch you into the conference.

What is a webinar? A webinar is similar to an audio conference. You dial up and listen to the speaker over the phone. The difference is that in Webinars you view the handout dynamically on your computer screen. Registrants will receive the URL and instructions prior to the event.

Can my colleagues listen in as well? Absolutely. With most audio conference providers, the conference fee is for a single phone connection, and most companies have several people listening at once via speakerphone in a conference room. There's no additional cost. Audio conferences deployed as a training resource in this way could very well be the most cost-effective form of professional education available on the market today.

How do I get the handout? You typically receive an email before the event that contains a hyperlink so you can download the presentation either in Powerpoint or Adobe Acrobat format.

Can I ask questions? Yes. In fact, one of the benefits of attending a live audio conference event is the ability to ask the expert speaker a specific question relevant to your own situation. Most audio conferences have some mechanism for asking questions, either in real time over the phone or submitted via live chat or email to the conference moderator,

Can I get a CD for use later? A CD, which stands for Compact Disc, is an option with most webinars. The CD recording of most audioconferences is available after the live event is over. The CD from any given webinar is an audio recording of that conference. You can listen to the CD in a CD player, exactly as you would a music CD, or using the CD drive in your computer. CDs typically include all handout materials as well.

What is a transcript? A transcript is a written account of the conference. Most companies also make the transcripts of their conferences available as an additional purchase.

Audio conferences are truly the 'next best thing' to being there when it comes to skills training and professional development. Once you try this type of learning, you'll find it to be the most cost-effective form of training available.

David Newman is VP of Product Development for Business 21 Publishing, a professional webinar company. Their organization offers a number of seminars per month, on topics like sales training, human resources, safety and more. will soon be entering into a partnership with Newman's organization to offer some of the webinars that are pertinent to the sweeping industry needs on the website. For more information, Newman may be reached via email sent to:

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© 2007 David Newman and World Sweeper
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