Virtual Meeting Coach

I'm Meri Aaron Walker and, as "The Virtual Meeting Coach," I sell distance relationship management solutions.

In a nutshell, I help people encounter and overcome the barriers in remote work.

For almost two decades, I have been part of an emerging social body of women who have found ourselves responding to the deepest vocational needs of human beings in the midst of the financial, ecological, and social tsunami we're living through as the Internet emerges.

I see, as does Barbara Marx Hubbard, that the financial, ecological, and social crises that continue around the globe are actually arousing us, waking human beings up to new kinds of co-creation and creativity. And to new kinds of collaboration and connectivity among us. Particularly when we're not in the same location. From where I'm sitting, these are truly the best of times for those with eyes to see, ears to hear, and a will to help one another rise to the next level of human evolution!

My Lifelong Passion

My lifelong passion has been helping people connect vitally with one another, both face-to-face and at a distance, so we can have real fun together while helping each other get things done quickly, efficiently, and well.

In the early part of my career, I was fascinated with radio, magazines, newspapers, and television, for the ways that they brought people who weren't in the same place into a kind of shared experience of our humanity.

First I wrote and was an assignment photographer while also teaching. Then I learned how to sync multiple layers of pictures, sound, and words using dozens of slide projectors and highly directional sound systems. In those early AV experiments we began to simulate, with greater fidelity, the sensory experience of sharing multiple perspectives at the same time. (This was long before anybody thought about "hyper-linking" one person's expression to another in a way that is now second-nature, even to third graders.)

Then, in the early 1980s I decided to return to graduate school to study Communication and teach photography at the University of Texas. My return to school coincided with the emergence of personal computers and the subterranean internet (that connected university and corporate scientists with the US Defense Department and other agencies) working its way to the surface of mainstream culture.

While I was in graduate school, my studies branched out into cultural anthropology and graphic design as I began to see that personal computers were going to trigger a global convergence of words, sounds and pictures that would change human cultures in every corner of the planet.

Homesteading Cyberspace for Over 25 Years

Back in the mid-1980s, even though I didn't enjoy the technical challenges my "geek" friends relished, I embraced personal computers and joined them in homesteading Cyberspace. I was thrilled by the prospect of having a device in my home that could connect me directly to other human beings around the world - without regard for the bureaucracies of media or higher education or government that continued to frustrate and complicate one person's direct sharing of their intelligence with another.

So for well over 25 years now, I've been a passionate participant in the ongoing experiment we call "The Internet." I see our human evolutionary process being played out - and accelerated - by this astounding new tool Mankind has created in my lifetime. Some days I still pinch myself to see if I'm dreaming! Every day I wake up excited and enlivened by the new day's delivery of previously unimagined possibilities as human beings discover more and more ways to use the Internet to respond to our deepest human needs.

Other people's passions for the ways we can use the Internet have them focused in all kinds of different areas. But for 25 years, my passion has remained attached to the question of "How can we use the Internet to connect vitally with others so we can enjoy each other while also getting stuff done more efficiently, when we can't always be in the same room."

I am ecstatic that we have FREE access to both asynchronous social media (like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Ning, and hundreds of other tools) and synchronous - or real-time - interactive virtual meetings that we can all use to respond to each others' needs - right in the midst of continuing financial, social, and ecological crises.

I see social media not as simply allowing us to survive these crises but actually to thrive in new ways! And what makes me say this is that social media connect us with one another in ways that are every bit as useful - and sometimes even more useful - than the ways human beings have traditionally learned and worked together for the previous 2000 years.

As "The Virtual Meeting Coach," I am excited every day about helping people master new tools and thinking routines that make work easier, faster, and more fun.My special passion is supporting experienced trainers, coaches and consultants as they uncover new ways to serve their clients whenever and wherever they need their help using multimedia, real-time, fully interactive virtual meeting rooms.

Virtual Meeting Rooms

Virtual meeting rooms offer new ways for people with expertise to share, to meet, and to exchange resources with others - without having to waste scarce resources of money, time and fuel to do it. They can’t be used for everything, but when people understand a few simple tools and new thinking routines, they can set up and manage virtual interaction that everyone enjoys so we don't have to travel all the time.

Whether our trips are across town, cross country, or across the globe, with fuel crises and global warming staring us in the face, we simply must find new ways to make fewer trips so we can reduce the carbon footprints we’re leaving with our business travel! For me, virtual meetings are the wings of independent business.

These days, I coach clients in smart social media, mobile work, and cloud computing strategies, both online and locally here in the beautiful Rogue Valley of Southern Oregon. I am grateful to be able to share the empowering and economically sustainable Web 2.0 tools and virtual meeting practices I’ve discovered with business owners around the globe! It is pure joy for me to help clients privately and in groups. I work both with individuals and with teams. And, of course, I still enjoy speaking to professional groups in face-to-face meetings, too.

The Rest of Me

When I’m not working, you can find me dancing, gardening, biking, hiking the hills above my home, learning to fish the wild rivers of southern Oregon, or mentoring young people who are challenged by difference.