Video Traveler

Thanks to better gear and faster connections, videoconferencing is finally catching on

Tony Markel, CEO of the Markel Corp., a specialty insurance firm, tried videoconferencing once before, to save money during the last recession, from 1990 to 1991. But "there were delays in the audio. We were stepping on each other's lines," says Markel, who demands strong communication and teamwork among his brokers in far-flung cities like Richmond, Va.; Toronto; Paris; and Sydney, Australia. Soon his employees were back on airplanes, and the expensive video hookups started gathering dust. So after the terror attacks last September, when travel delays were eating up the time of his employees, Markel thought videoconferencing would be a...

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