Travelling restrictions and social distancing measures might require that your meetings are held via video conferencing technology. There are many out there but most commonly used is Zoom.
Zoom is a web-based platform that enables people to meet online with real-time messaging and content sharing. Several paid options provide unlimited call times and other features. To host a meeting a sign up to Zoom is required. The basic account is free. To attend a meeting the free Zoom app must be downloaded.
The Zoom free account offers:
- unlimited 1 to 1 meetings
- hosts up to 100 participants with a restricted 40 min time limit
- host controls for video, audio and screen sharing options
- recording options
- messaging during meeting
Detailed instructions on Zoom use can be downloaded here.
Other similar video conferencing platforms have been compared here.
Tips on holding a meeting remotely
- Check your technology before the meeting and run a test including your attendees.
- Send a clear agenda as well as instructions to your members on how to remotely join and participate.
- Have meeting participants check in early so that meeting can start on time and possible technology issues can be resolved.
- Decide on housekeeping rules during the meeting, for example
- Participants mute their speaker until they are talking.
- Participants use the hands up and down controls to indicate if they want to speak, rather than interrupting the talk. They then can be invite to speak.
- Participants use the chat function to add to the meeting content without interrupting the conversation. Be aware, individual chats will also be visible to the host at the end of the meeting.
- If a meeting is running over the 40 minute limit of the free account, ask participants to dial in again with the same meeting ID and you will have another 40 minutes.
- Justice Connect provides extensive information on holding meetings including annual meetings for each Australian jurisdiction.
- The Institute of Community Directors also provides great tips and advice to take your Annual General Meeting (AGM) online this year.
- If in doubt if your meetings comply with your rule book and requirements contact the Office of the Registrar of Indigenous Corporations (ORIC). The Registrar has implemented special rules for corporations manage the threats and impacts of COVID-19 (also COVID or Coronavirus).
When to meet?
To find a meeting date when everybody is available can be a nightmare with many emails going back and forth. Meet Doodle, a web-based polling app, meaning people can vote for the options that suits them best. It helps you to find the right date and or answers to other questions.
Once signed up to Doodle you can use a free account or a paid Doodle Premium (allows for more options) to ask all the people you want to meet with via email.
To create a Doodle poll just follow the prompts or see more detailed instructions here.
Tips on using doodle polls
- It seems easier to copy the link to the doodle poll for the dates you recommend than inviting participants through the doodle app.
- Doodle only links to google contacts and therefore, you need to type the email addresses if you use a work account.
- Emails send from Doodle often end up in people’s spam folder.