Ok, so in full disclosure, I wasn't one to immediately embrace Zoom. I also wasn't one to Love the virtual facilitation where I had to use Zoom to engage participants, help individuals learn and achieve business outcomes. But, as I've gotten more familiar with the platform, the process for engaging using the platform and lots of experience, both for business and the classroom, I can now honestly say that Zoom is my go-to option for facilitating meetings and conducting training. I offer four top Zoom Hacks to help you get started and if you are interested in learning more about conducting virtual meetings, connect with Armatas Advisory Group to learn about their solution offerings.
1. Pair Your Phone. Have you ever hosted a Zoom meeting and you notice someone has shown up in the participant window with only their phone number? This indicates that the participant has joined by phone rather than by using computer audio. To clearly identify who that participant is, the host can enter #participant id# on their phone and that person will be paired to their login name.
2. Use of Whiteboard. Have you ever been leading a Zoom meeting and had an impending feeling that the participants on the other end are multi-tasking or disengaged? A great Zoom tool to help engage your teams is the use of the Whiteboard. To start the Whiteboard, you simply share the Whiteboard and then ask participants to use their annotate tools to engage in the discussion. You may be wanting every team member to input on goals for the next year. Or, perhaps you have a global team and you want to brainstorm on solving a problem and you want to ensure everyone gives input. Using the Whiteboard is an effective option for full team engagement.
3. Use of Polls. Polls can be set up in your Zoom account and can be launched at any time during the meeting. The use of polls can be used to give participants an opportunity to vote confidentially on a proposal. Or, perhaps you are conducting training and you want to assess training knowledge. Or, maybe you are a leader and you simply want to better understand how relevant are the leadership meetings to your team. Polls can be another mechanism for encouraging participation and quick engagement.
4. Breakout Rooms. Consider using breakout rooms when you have a large team and you want smaller groups to discuss topics. You can assign who you want in each breakout room and as the host, you can move in and out of the breakout. Participants can use a Whiteboard in the breakout room to track their work, save it and then come back in the larger session to review. Using Chat, participants can upload a Whiteboard file to share with other participants. Breakout rooms are another great way to leverage all participants and keep meetings interesting!