LMS guide: Turning face-to-face meetings virtual
The lack of interpersonal interaction can be a challenge for trainers. The hybrid workplace and virtual gatherings have impacted how people and organizations share knowledge. In this guide, we list 9 practical steps for successfully turning your face-to-face meetings into virtual ones.
Test the technology
Test-run your chosen webinar tool in a relaxed and informal setting with a friend or colleague. Knowing all the features and functionalities upfront will help you feel more confident. A knowledgeable meeting host can also improve the user experience by assisting those who might need some technical assistance.
Optimize the format
Are you a solo presenter, or do you want to involve your audience? Is your presentation word-dense? These are questions that you might want to ask yourself in order to provide the best possible learning experience. When choosing an interactive approach, make sure that activities are adapted to a virtual environment with few physical elements, such as post-it notes. If you have a heavy agenda, send out information prior to the meeting to allow your learners to prepare. Using Learnster’s meeting tool, you can easily package and distribute related information before, during and after the session.
Notify the participants well in advance about your new virtual meeting setting. This includes potential program changes due to the new format, supporting downloadable material as well as technical instructions. A positive and encouraging attitude will motivate and inspire your delegates.
Update the material
As with all meetings, double-check the material before presenting to catch any outdated or irrelevant material. Correcting errors live can be both stressful and difficult due to the lack of face-to-face interaction.
Create a new activity page
In the Learnster platform, head over to the scheduled time slot in the training program and remove “Location”. Replace this information with new instructions on how to download Learnster’s webinar tool. See animation below:
Give yourself 15 minutes prior to the online meeting to ensure all that attendees can join. This takes a lot of stress out of the presentation and you can focus on helping those struggling to connect. For instance, should they fail to connect via desktop, perhaps the participant can join through mobile or a tablet?
Tick off the practicalities
First things first. Before getting into the big topics, make sure to walk your audience through some of the basic meeting functions. This may not be obvious to everyone. For example, how do you mute/unmute yourself? Kick off in a positive spirit to spark energy to the meeting. Make it personal by introducing yourselves to one another. Start off by introducing yourself and ask your audience to do the same. Interaction early on makes it easier to chip in later into the conversations.
Make a strong impression
Start presenting and do what you do best. You can share your screen with your cohort if you have visual aids and supporting material. When presenting through Learnster, your audience will already be familiar with the course outline and potential appendices. This creates a nice flow and consistency. If you want to break up your participants into smaller discussion groups along the way, you can create “break-out sessions” in which you can join in and support.