Online meetings ok, but how do you make an online workshop truly successful and interactive? Six good tips!
Online meetings now go smoothly and there are many suitable platforms available. But organizing a truly interactive online brainstorming or workshop with a large group of people? How do you go about that?
Normally I would literally get the participants moving, sticking post-its, drawing on whiteboards and collectively creating an overview on a large brown paper. With a large group, it is helpful to split into smaller groups during the workshop and then briefly pitch the insights to each group. In any case, everything is offline, precisely without digital tools. But online? Yes it is possible. Here are some tips to successfully organize and facilitate such an online workshop.
Tip 1 Combine tools.
There is not one tool that is really complete for online workshops, so just use a few of them at the same time. Combine a conference platform with an interactive, online whiteboard where participants can give their own input.
Zoom: With this conference platform, you can create “breakout rooms,” which for certain parts allow you to split the group into smaller groups for discussion and then you can merge everyone back together. You can choose the group arrangement yourself or have it randomized.
Miro: This online whiteboard platform allows you to collaborate online on a canvas. Participants who can interactively add post-its, text, arrows etc. to the shared canvas.
Tip 2: Get to know your tools.
Practice using the breakout rooms in Zoom and practice switching quickly in Miro so you can focus on facilitating during the session.
Tip 3: Start with a warm-up to let participants practice with the tools.
Devise an exercise that introduces participants to both breakout rooms in Zoom and adding, moving and collaborating on post-its in Miro.
Tip 4: Prepare your frames carefully.
In Miro, the frames are your guide through the workshop. Create frames, visual structure and concise explanations for each frame. This gives you and the participants grip, focus and clarity. Be sure to create a frame that invites use so that participants will stick and group digital post-its.
Tip 5: Give each breakout group in Zoom its own frame in Miro
Make sure each breakout room in Zoom has access to a pre-prepared frame in the canvas of Miro. Besides providing clarity and concrete results, it can also be used during a pitch from each group to the rest of the participants.
Tip 6: Actively use “bring everyone to me” in Miro at certain times.
This creates shared focus. You use it to move participants to the screen you see at a specific moment. This can be very useful during explanations or a pitch by a subgroup during the workshop.
Enjoy these tips and we wish you many successful workshops! Should you need further assistance, Beacon facilitates various workshops on product innovation.Back to overview