Avoid three pitfalls in your well prepared meetings

Imagine: Indira is the national coordinator of a large health program in Southeast Asia. For their annual seminar, she had excellently prepared the content and speakers. This kept the 100 viewers present throughout the session.

1. Prevent writer’s block at the Q&A

When it was time for the Q&A, Indira asked the audience to write questions to the speakers in the chat. An uncomfortable silence followed. No one posed a question. Indira cleverly solved this with some self-prepared questions. 

✍️ 🤔 Share in the chat: 

What are your questions to the speaker?

Still, she would have preferred the speakers to answer questions from the audience instead.

Viewers will lack the courage to post a question in the chat if it has not been used at all during the session. It is a lot easier if you and other participants have already answered a ‘who-is-in-the-room’ question in the chat during the opening, and then regularly read activity in the chat. For example, the new agenda items or the topics that each panelist is talking about.

2. Use chat replies to make your meeting sparkle

If you managed to get a nice dynamic in the chat, then don’t read what someone has written—certainly not when it comes to substantive comments or questions. It is better to ask the person to repeat in a few sentences what they wrote in the chat.

The advantage of this is that your meeting becomes stronger in terms of content. Whoever shared the interesting insight probably thought about it more than you. In letting the contributor speak, you create opportunities for participants to benefit from the diversity of the group.

Your meeting will be less static and hearing different voices will help speakers and participants to focus on the meeting. They will need to be focused, before they can learn and come up with better solutions for your challenges.

3. Be smart, talk slowly

In meetings with translation, you must speak slowly if you want all participants to understand your message. You may feel stupid if you talk like a tortoise. Especially, if you are used to sharing many ideas in limited time and want to bring enthusiasm into the meeting through a faster pace. Still, in online meetings with interpretation it is wise to speak slowly or at the very least allow silence at the end of your sentences. Otherwise, you exclude some of the attendees.

The United Nations Delegates Handbook suggests a speech rate of 100 to 120 words per minute ‘to enable the interpreters to give an accurate and complete rendition of statements.’ Above 150 words per minute, it is impossible for interpreters to translate simultaneously, and they stop or summarize parts of your message. So, talk slower than Brene Brown in her TED talk on The power of vulnerability. She spoke 154 words per minute.

Speakers are requested to deliver their statements at a speed that is interpretable. […]

When statements are delivered at a fast pace to comply with the time limit, the quality of interpretation may suffer. 

We can take care of your online events. Brainy Bunch has a team of experienced facilitators, technical support experts, speaker coaches and interpreters. Please, contact us for a chat about the possibilities. 

Do you wish to receive the newsletter?

Jobien Hekking

The Brainy Bunch newsletter is published four times a year with interesting articles, tips, exclusive invitations and an overview of new episodes of Brainy Bunch TV. 

Keep on improving your online events and subscribe now!

Begin typing your search term above and press enter to search. Press ESC to cancel.

Back To Top

Thank you for your upload