As we approach the festive period, we start looking forward to eating too much, drinking too much and being with our families. But instead of being glued to the Telly-Box or playing board games 1980’s style, the kids will be playing Minecraft on the latest iPads, the teenagers will be Snapchatting with their buddies, cousin Emma will be checking her FaceBook and even mum will decide to get her phone out to Skype granny! Whether we like it or not, technology has become a part of our lives and here are a few tips to help you get through the holiday period without being ‘trude’.
Don’t be ‘Trude’ - Give up your WiFi password in 5
So, unless you have been living under a rock, you would have noticed that everyone has something digital with them. Internet of things (IoT) has made us all interconnected and no one appreciates it when their mobile phones, smart watches and fitness devices stop working as soon as they enter your humble abode. Don’t be trude and remember to share your WiFi password as soon as possible. A smart host would have their wifi username and password printed out and up on a notice board somewhere to save them having to get up from that sofa trying to find it a few lemonades later (!).
‘Snap’ Chat? Email what 4?
I love gallivanting through my mailboxes, every single one of them – said no one ever! We are not only slowly moving away from emails, we are also moving towards Virtual Reality and Artificial Intelligence. When I am on emails I am either working or looking for delivery confirmation of that Amazon package. Discussions are taking place in real-time and lots of people are choosing to reach out to their folks via social networks and mobile apps. How about a cute video invitation to add a personal touch?
It’s a charm when it’s 3
You only start hosting when you feel adult enough and believe it or not some of your guests will bring kids with them (unavoidable at this time of year I am afraid – of course I am being cute, I love kids!). Troublesome embarrassments abound when you mix kids with smart devices. They are so much more handy with technology and that interconnected IoT-type smart TV can easily by mistake let them broadcast that photo or video that you were hoping would never even touch the outskirts of the internet. Get smarter than your smart devices and build in security passwords before that party of three arrives.
Then there will be 2
Sure you have invited 50 people to your fairly average sized flat for this bash. Now is the time to think about keeping them entertained, and not run out of food, drinks and patience. You and your partner in crime can maintain your dignity by using mobile phones for one-to-one conversations and not let your guests get a whiff of the loss of the plan A dish in the oven and the discreet hatching of a secret plan B dish. You will be surprised how clearly voices travel through those walls. Let’s keep our devices charged and keep them in our pockets.
Don't forget to think about everyone. Your co-workers will be busy with their own family and friends soon and one short team meet-up before you all head your separate ways for holidays is a good thing to consider. If you are working in a similar setup as me, you will have your team scattered across the world. At Polycom, we drink our own champagne and sync up on video at least once a week to battle the time zones and make decisions about the next steps for our global team projects. We use this hour as a forum to exchange best wishes as well and I am sure no one will mind if you had a glass of fizz while doing so provided none of the meeting participants feel left out as some could be joining from remote locations and mobile devices. I even know a team who once opened their Secret Santa presents during a video meeting.
It's a wrap….
One final thing, have your chargers and power banks on standby; this prevents a whole host of potential scenarios for guests attending your party, especially when they wake up next day with a low battery. If you can help them with keeping their phone fuelled up, that’s one less thing you get the blame for.