Confirm Speakers + Topics
Make sure that you email your speakers well in advance – confirming if they are the best person to speak about the topic and confirm their availability.
Book Rooms, Order Food and Send Invites
Book room 10 mins before the event and 30 mins after, in case it gets extended. This way you have a room and you are not hustling at the last minute.
Order food, and make sure it is there well before the event (include a buffer time in case they get late)
If you are sending an invite to an alias many weeks back, make sure a day before you also add the people who weren’t there when you send out the invite the first time. For example, new employees could possibly be added in the interim. Use TBD details if necessary. If using TBD: make a note to update the invite(s) when you have details If sending to a large email alias, Google won’t add new members automatically. Set a reminder to update the invite 24 hours before the meeting to capture new alias members
Clearly Communicate Expectations
Ask the speaker to send in their presentation/content atleast 2 hours. And let them know if they don’t then you will not incorporate it into the slide deck.
If you need a moderator or is it a Hybrid meeting
- As a moderator, plan out the agenda so you know when you should squeeze in Q&A from the audience.
- Keep Slack open on your mobile in case you have asked the audience to post their questions there.
- Connect via cable instead of wifi in case of an outage.
- Dial through landline so that it gives you more control.
- Adjust meeting in Advance. Make sure that entry-in and entry-out sound is muted. You can automatically mute the user when they join the call. In join.me application, you have meeting settings for the same. You can also print out the instructions/shortcuts for a webex/join.me app. As an organizer it is helpful. Have the meeting setup before you start. You need to confirm that several people can join as multiple hosts.
- As a moderator make a list. Add timestamp for the calls. Few things to think about: Record Call, Introduce Speaker, It’s time for Q&A now
Have a kit for a meeting. Few things you can have are Cable, Battery, Chargers. So that you don’t have to run around while the meeting is happening.
Print Slides (mark speaker transition slide)
Print Slides beforehand, so that you know which slide they are on and also message them in case they are going slow. If someone is running late then you can someone else to which slide they should jump on.
In case there is a video, make sure you buffer it beforehand in case they have slow internet. Cue up content. You can dial in also using mobile incase the web/laptop shuts down and take control of the situation.
Presenters should come 15 mins before to test audios, practice advancing their slides, to get a rundown of the agenda, to receive any instructions from you if any. Maybe even have a code word for a red flag.
So no to rule breakers
It doesn’t matter if the speakers are senior or not, learn to say a NO if there is a need. You can let them know this is not how we decided the meeting was going to go so we can’t change things at the last moment. You are the voice of people attending the meeting, so discuss the meeting clause beforehand.
Turn all the notification off on your laptop
This is very very important so there is no distraction. It is important to do so because you may have a message which NSFW or something which you don’t want everyone to know.
Start on time every time
Address issues, don’t ignore them
If there is a dog barking or an echo, just ask speakers to take control of that and tell the audience that you are going to pause until the issue is resolved. You can say: “Hey guys, it seems there is an echo, we would request you to please mute yourself if you are not speaking.”
If you are Live Streaming
Research the platform beforehand. Include IT person in the call if possible. Things to think about: How many people you can include? How you can record it?
If someone is derailing you with questions
Say: “I am going to put that question in the parking lot. If we have time once we finish our agenda then we will take it up again, otherwise we have noted it down and we will reach out to you once the session is over”