What are the best ways to engage participants on conference calls? Yesterday I was teaching a team from the RSA some remote facilitation basics, and I shared this little list:
- Prepare well and appear organised
- Explain why you’re doing/suggesting things
- Share tasks such as note-taking, timekeeping
- Poll individuals
- Use video
- Use visuals (such as the “where is everybody?” map on this page)
- Use stories
- Use questions
- Use breakout rooms.
This is based on a list by Penny Pullan in her book Virtual Leadership. But I’ve added number 9, as I think it makes a huge difference.
Even the RSA, an organisation which can sometimes have a bit of a dinosaurish style, is starting to shift to these more participative approaches. Quite simply, they keep people engaged in the call, rather than distracted by other things.
- Want to try this out? If you have a distributed team, why not book me for a virtual lunch-and-learn? Contact me here.