The DOs and DON’Ts of online meetings to create successful engagement

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How to create a successful online meeting. How to create a successful online meeting.

Event MC, facilitator and speaker, Roy Sheppard shares a selection of top tips for successful online meetings.

"The world has changed in an instant and alternatives to face-to-face meetings are urgently needed to protect careers within the event and conference space," Sheppard told M&IT.

"In today’s online meeting world, content and production is now king and is a steep learning curve for so many people. Technology can be scary," Sheppard added.

To help appease the worry of creating successful online meetings, Sheppard produced a 10-minute video. He explains the importance of online meetings in general, but especially during a time when face-to-face meetings are globally prohibited.

Roy Sheppard.

Some of the dos and don’ts mentioned in the video include:

  • Write down in 15 words or less the purpose and relevance of the meeting from your audiences' perspective. Then create a holding slide with that information for attendees to see before you begin.
  • Start the meeting at an ‘odd’ time such as 3 minutes or 7 minutes past the hour - this focusses the mind of attendees and will lead to more people logging on on-time. Since lock-down, this also has a technical advantage as video-conferencing platforms experience MASSIVE spikes on the hour and half hour which can cause problems for some users when they try to log-on.
  • Start the meeting on-time, do not wait for latecomers. Doing this respects those who did show up on-time and increases the likelihood latecomers will be on-time next time
  • Don’t recap for latecomers either.
  • Instead, nominate someone to take meeting minutes and ask them to keep posting their notes to the chat area.
  • If the system you are using has interactivity capability - use it as soon as possible in your meeting to make people feel they are part of the meeting, not just bystanders.
"The events industry prides itself for meticulous logistical expertise. Yet I’ve found that content and on-stage delivery hasn’t been given the same degree of attention by organisers who tend to focus on venue and hotel selection, registration, F&B."

Watch the video here.

Holly Patrick
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Holly Patrick
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A desire to travel led Holly Patrick to the business meetings and events world and she’s never looked back. Holly takes a particular interest in event sustainability and creating a diverse and inclusive industry. When she’s not working, she can be found rolling skating along Brighton seafront listening to an eclectic playlist, featuring the likes of Patti Smith, Sean Paul, and Arooj Aftab.

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