Harness technology to make the most of your meetings

We’ve all been there. A meeting has started and for some reason there’s a technical glitch. The slides don’t work. Or the Internet connection is shot. Or the video doesn’t cooperate.

While a short inconvenience, any flub could mar an otherwise well-planned meeting.

Here are some ways to manage and incorporate technology for your next meeting:

  • First, consider the objectives of your meeting. Is it a strategic planning session or largely information sharing? Are visuals and connectivity important or is face-to-face dialogue imperative? Just because you can show PowerPoint slides, doesn’t mean you have to. Some of the most successful meetings are from old-fashioned conversation. On the other hand if you have a larger group or a group outside the meeting room (or in different time zones) you’ll want to consider video conferencing tools like Skype, GoToMeeting or WebEx.
  • If you have to impart information from slides, consider overhauling your usual approach. Tools like Prezi offer more dynamic presentations. And break up information so there are just a few points for each slide – your audience will get lost in minutia presented on slides.
  • Incorporate video. Videos are almost expected in this day of hyper connectivity and short attention spans. Consider a short video to break up your presentation, either embedded in your slides or to show with a high-speed video connection. Either way, test the video before the meeting. Then test again. Nothing stops momentum with the words “I can’t get the video to work.”
  • Consider an ice-breaker to start the meeting. Create a free online quiz from sites like Online Quiz Creator. It’s a fun and engaging way to get the creative juices flowing.
  • Have help handy – just in case. Whether it’s an IT expert or a member of your team adept at technology, it’s comforting to know you’ll have support if your technology does not work right.
  • Put away the smartphones. Sure, it’s great technology but to stay focused on the meeting, we suggest attendees leave their phones on silent or vibrate and tucked away. Just allow breaks for them to check messages.
  • Share your insights. Many businesses use enterprise social networks like Yammer and SocialCast designed to foster workplace sharing and encourage internal communication. If appropriate, instead of saving notes from your meeting in a Word document on a single computer, why not post the details as bullet points in your team’s social networking group so everyone can access the insights?

With four screens, high-speed video connections, and available staff, VTEC features the latest connectivity for small meetings and imaging and classroom technology for the training of clinical trial sponsors, technologists and physician investigators. To learn more about our technology, call our experts at 617-726-9399.

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