Online conferences are becoming more and more common, unsurprisingly, considering we are still primarily working from home. Traditional in-person conferences are becoming less common, and will likely continue to do so. Thanks to the number of online conferencing services, it is easy to do these virtually.
But, even if the technology aspect is easy, it can be hard to get the same amount of engagement, learning, and productivity out of online conferences. While in-person conferences encourage teamwork and collaboration, sitting on Zoom with your camera off doesn’t necessarily have the same effect.
It can be hard to stay focused, hard to connect with coworkers, and hard to get as much done when working virtually. We all know the struggle.
But, we have a few tips and tricks that will help you get the most out of online conferences.
What We Suggest When Planning a Meeting
First, make sure to have a game plan. Planning for your meeting, and sending out a formal agenda ahead of time, can help keep the meeting on track. Plus, having a schedule for your meeting and following that schedule will make employees happier and make it easier to get things done quickly.
Which leads us to our second tip, schedule accordingly! Many meetings provide the schedules ahead of time, with something like an agenda, a quick email, or a short briefing before the official meeting.
Having a schedule and a clear idea of what to focus on during the meeting helps keep everything on track. Along with having a game plan, these two will make sure the meeting is productive and efficient.
Along with having a game plan and scheduling accordingly, you should try to set your intention. According to moz.com, this can help you gain something from the experience, be this a business opportunity or an increase in efficiency within your SEO processes.
Planning what you want to achieve will help keep everyone on track and give you a goal to work towards as a group. This will help in brainstorming situations and planning – if you know what you want it is a lot easier to get there.
To keep everything productive when planning a meeting, it is important to keep your goal and your game plan in mind. Particularly with technology, nobody wants to be sitting in a meeting while people try to figure things out.
That is another reason why learning the technology ahead of time is a good idea. This goes for both planners, and attendees. If you understand the platform you are using, it is much easier to share your screen, give presentations, and avoid any faux pas (like leaving your microphone on while talking to someone else).
What We Suggest When Attending a Meeting
While you want to learn the technology while attending a meeting, there are a few other key pieces of advice you should keep in mind.
One of these is pretty simple – take notes. Not only do you look like you are more engaged, you are much more likely to be paying attention while taking notes.
If you are anything like me, online class, meetings, and presentations make it a struggle to pay attention – especially if listening to a monotonous speaker. Taking notes helps avoid dozing off, not paying attention, or being caught off guard when asked a question.
Plus, taking notes makes it easier to go back to important information at the end of, and after, the meeting. This makes it quick and simple to reference important statistics and ideas!
If you have managed to pay attention, understand the platform you are working with, and take notes, networking is the next step. Of course, this doesn’t apply when meeting with only people inside your organization and on your team. But, during online conferences and meetings with outside organizations or employees, this is a great opportunity to meet new people.
Make sure to practice your elevator pitch!
With online conferences becoming more and more common, it is important to get the most out of them that is possible.
Keep in mind a few of our quick tips and tricks, including the list below:
- Have a game plan
- Schedule accordingly
- Set your intention
- Learn the technology
- Take notes
If you manage to get a couple of these under your control, online meetings will be engaging and easy to get important information and progress out of!
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