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How Free Conference Call Services Helped Me Work Remotely

Home is where the heart is. That’s what they say, right? Or maybe it’s this: Home is wherever you hang your hat. Regardless, Home can be wherever you want Home to be, especially these days: a recent poll by the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that "24 percent of employed people did some or all of their work at home” last year, a percentage that’s certain to increase over the next decade.

man with bag and laptop makes conference callBut this presents a dilemma: Workers in different spaces across multiple time zones need a way to collaborate with their team, efficiently and productively.

Not long ago, I was approached by a colleague to do some freelance work in my off hours. “Could I join tomorrow’s brainstorming session?” he wanted to know. The company is based in Oakland and I’m in Los Angeles; the six-hour drive seemed daunting. But then he offered me the link to his “virtual meeting room” — we could all meet online with webcams to go through the project together.

Perfect! I logged in at the appointed time, entered a screen name, and there we were: though hundreds of miles apart, we were connected together in the same virtual meeting space. Documents were shared and ideas hashed out, all with the ability to see one another via webcams. It was a great session!’s online meeting rooms are handy in all kinds of situations. Try some of these for yourself:

  • Team meetings
  • Family get-togethers
  • Homework sessions
  • Coaching and training
  • Wedding planning

My new team and I really hit it off, but I’m certain the same result would have been next-to-impossible had I not been able to log in remotely. Going forward, I’ll definitely be making free conference call services an important part of my work arsenal.


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