How to Manage Your Remote Conferences: A Brief Guide
While remote conferences offer more benefits than physical conferences, they pose a unique set of challenges that make the management overwhelming. It can be quite hard to coordinate speakers and attendees that are spread across the globe through a screen. Worse still, people attend using different technologies and from different time zones.
However, taking your time beforehand to prepare, find the right tools, and implement the right strategies can go a long way in mitigating the management challenge.
Here are five tips on how to manage your next remote conference to keep everyone happy, engaged, and on the same page.
- Choose the right tool
Managing your remote participants well starts with choosing the right tool for your remote conferences. To choose the right tool, consider the key functionalities that you need and the number of people you are targeting.
For instance, if you are planning on sharing a presentation, you would need a conferencing tool that allows screen sharing. Otherwise, you risk agitating your audience if you promised a demo that you can’t deliver. In addition, you need a tool that can accommodate all the participants. Again, you don’t want a platform that might go haywire in the middle of the event.
- Make it all-inclusive
It can be hard to manage people who can’t understand your language well. Their attention will most likely wander off, or take everyone’s precious time asking for clarifications.
Integrating simultaneous remote translation tools can make all the difference in ensuring that everyone stays on the same page. However, you want a tool that is reliable in providing high-quality interpretations. InterpretCloud offers a reliable Video Remote Interpreting (VRI) solution to help you bring everyone together. You can utilize this tool to interpret content for your remote foreign audience. It also allows them to ask questions in their own language and interprets for you in your language. Besides, relaying your message in multiple languages encourages a wider audience to attend.
- Combine both synchronous and asynchronous communication
Synchronous communication is when there is a live interaction between speakers and attendees. In asynchronous communication, attendees leave their questions or comments and come later to check for their responses.
When you are holding a remote conference with many people, live interactions with everyone wanting to speak can turn chaotic. Some people might also feel frustrated when they can’t get their point across. Combining these two ways of communicating ensures that everyone gets a chance to be heard. Those attendees who don’t want to fight for a chance to talk can simply leave their concern, idea, or whatever they want to say, and you can attend to them later.
- Observe the time
If you want your audience to bounce off faster than they came, try starting your event late by a few minutes. And if they stay, you are likely to meet agitated individuals who can only prove harder to manage.
It is very important that you respect every participant’s time and money. You can ensure that you are keeping time by ensuring that all your technology is working well way before time. This way, you can avoid last-minute technical hiccups that might crop up. In addition, try not to run over the agreed duration. You can do this by sticking to the scheduled time for all sessions. It helps to be well prepared with notes and research such that you don’t have to waste time referring back to the internet and the like.
- Be an active facilitator
As common with many meetings, participants can also go off course during live interactions. You might also find them rambling over a chance to speak.
It is your duty as the leader to maintain order in such times. You must be keen to notice when a discussion goes off-topic and intervene when necessary. You also need to be a good facilitator to avoid scenarios where everyone wants a chance to speak. For instance, rather than asking the general crowd to give comments, pinpoint certain individuals to air their points. However, be very careful to ensure that everyone is represented.
With the above tips, managing your future remote conferences will not be as challenging. They can also turn out as successful as physical conferences. You only need to choose the right tool, observe time, and up your meeting facilitating skills. In addition, make your attendees feel included by using translation tools and leveraging platforms that support both synchronous and asynchronous ways of communicating.
Kelly Barcelos is a progressive digital marketing manager for Jobsoid – Applicant Tracking System. She is responsible for leading the content and social media teams at work. Her expertise and experience in the field of HR enable her to create value-driven content for her readers – both on Jobsoid’s blog and other guest blogs where she publishes content regularly.