The 4 surprising benefits of virtual seminars
Photo credit: Damir Kopezhanov
Are you starting to feel at home in the virtual world? As much as we miss seeing our team and clients in person, we are increasingly appreciating the benefits of remote work and virtual events.
We recently hosted a webinar on virtual leadership skills in times of Covid-19. Andre de Wit of the Amsterdam Leadership Academy and Anna Schak of DB Training shared their insights into leading remote teams. It was an interactive and collaborative event that connected leaders from different continents and industries.
The event wasn’t just a replica of a traditional seminar, it was a whole new format with many benefits that make virtual seminars a viable option beyond the current crisis.
1. Easily connect people across the globe
There are no limits to who can speak at or attend a virtual seminar. We had speakers from Amsterdam and Frankfurt, the organisers were based in Hamburg and attendees came from as far away as South Africa. As travel is not a concern, you just have to be aware of different time zones.
We found that limiting the number of attendees allows the speakers and the audience to acknowledge everyone in the seminar. This creates a collaborative environment where people can share their viewpoints and stay connected after the webinar has ended.
2. A different way of being interactive
We found personal interaction to be key to the success of this webinar. Not only did the speakers encourage feedback, but with a moderated chat everyone could share their thoughts and experiences throughout the presentation. This made for a richer and more engaging experience.
The use of search engines, live questionnaires and screen sharing allows participants to be more involved than in a traditional setting.
3. Incredibly time-efficient
In the past, attending a seminar often meant giving up time at work or with your family. With a virtual seminar you only need to carve the duration of the event and nothing more out of your calendar. This makes the virtual format more time-efficient and also more accessible to people who don’t have the resources to travel.
4. Easy to follow up
We followed up the virtual seminar by sharing the recording and slides with the participants. This makes it easy to review the content as needed. We also facilitated attendees connecting through the event if they were mutually interested.
Virtual communication skills seminars with EnglishBusiness
At EnglishBusiness we have taken these lessons and applied them to our tried and trusted communication skills seminars. Our goal is not just to provide information, but to help attendees build applicable skills. To ensure we can live up to this standard in a virtual world, we apply the following principles to virtual communication skills seminars:
- Limited number of participants to ensure individual attention
- Seminar material to review, practise and deepen the content of the live sessions
- Use of interactive tools to create a collaborative environment
- Trainer and peer feedback on realistic exercises
We now offer all communication skills seminars and language seminars in a virtual format and have added open seminars to our portfolio.