Personal Small Business Enterprise

TV for Waiting Rooms and Employee Lounges

Customers and clients can get fidgety or uncomfortable if they have to wait long periods before meeting with you or someone in your company. Having live television playing in your waiting room can keep them entertained and get them relaxed before a big meeting, which can work to your advantage.

The same is true for employee lounges and break rooms. Live TV programming can help boost employee morale, help workers unwind during breaks or allow them to keep on top of major live events in an open forum – like the World Cup of Soccer and Summer Olympics –  without doing so secretly at their desks and thus impacting productivity.

As with everything you do in your business, though, providing live TV content needs some consideration beyond simply plugging in a television set and turning it on.

1. Match your content to your customers
Private-office locations that offer while-you-wait services vary considerably in both the type of business and the profile of the customers they attract. Medical offices are as distinct from auto service centres as a professional services company is from a hairdressing salon. If you are an accounting firm or something similar, a television set tuned to a business news channel playing both the headlines of the day and the latest stock ticker numbers is a match with your branding and your customers’ interests. Similarly, a women’s hair salon has a fairly obvious range of programming it could offer its clientele.

For other types of business, it may not be as clear cut, however, so be careful not to assume that your customers share the same tastes. Just because most of the customers at your auto service shop are male doesn’t mean all your programming should be sports. And patients waiting to see their doctor will cover a broad swath of interests, so choose your programming carefully.

The same is true of live television programming in employee lounges and break rooms. If your objective is a happier and more productive workforce, then you will need to pay close attention to how the content that is viewed is chosen in the first place. This is a good opportunity to empower employees in a simple decision over one aspect of their working environment.

2. Take full advantage of special-event programming
Major sporting events like the Olympics, the World Cup of Soccer, the Oscars or the final episode of a blockbuster television show bring millions of Canadians flocking to their television sets for the shared experience. Many of these events happen during business hours, which can present both opportunities and challenges if your place of work has live TV programming.

In the reception area, tuning your TV set to the sports blockbuster of the day means your visitors and customers can stay connected with the big game even as they go about their business.

With your employees, must-watch TV events open a whole host of opportunities to boost employee morale, do some effective team building, and counter what might otherwise be a sharp drop-off in productivity. Again, consult widely to make sure as many employees as possible feel included, and set up agreed-upon periods when the big event is going to be streamed live. Review with employees your IT policies about using company devices or bandwidth for personal use, such as watching on their own when they should be working.

3. Make the most of modern technologies
Today’s advanced equipment, like wireless receivers and PVRs, gives you a great deal of control over your programming and where you make it available. Installation is easier than ever with no drilling or cables required to put your programming exactly where it’s wanted. You can even offer your customers and employees access to some of their most popular apps, like TumbleBooks, the Weather Network and Galaxie Music.

The bottom line
Wait times, break times and special times can all be made interesting times if you provide live television programming to your customers and employees. With a little forethought, you can have customers who are less frustrated when waiting is inevitable, and employees who are happier and more productive when popular television programming is made available to them.

Do you deploy live television programming to help entertain your customers or employees or both? What issues did you take into consideration when you decided to do so? What has worked and what have you had to change? Please share your experiences with us.

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