Remote meetings (part 5) information meetings & training
Lifelong learning has arrived in our everyday work life. Those who want to keep up with the exponential developments of the globalized world cannot ignore further training. Information meetings and training are often accompanied by travel and unproductive waiting time for employees. Thanks to technical innovations, however, more and more training events can be conducted remotely. We will give you tips for their implementation in this article.
Interaction instead of ego
We can all remember our time at school and the boring frontal lectures that took all the fun out of learning. Frontal lectures are also still common in adult training. The attention is focused on a single person, but not every lecturer is a gifted speaker. This isn’t improved by transmitting the lecture through a video conference, either. Luckily there are now visualization tools that support lecturers while they provide information. Interaction is what really starts making training interesting for the participants. A virtual reality conference is perfect for this.
If you are leading a training session, it is helpful to ask yourself a few questions in advance:
- What exactly should the participants learn from the meeting?
- What information and knowledge should be conveyed?
- How does the informational meeting remain exciting and informative?
Preparing the training session
Make sure that all participants are familiar and comfortable with the software. Load all data that you need onto the clipboard in the VR software via drag & drop. If necessary, prepare the VR meeting room, for example, by labeling a few whiteboards in advance. More information about preparing a VR conference can be found here.
Send an agenda to all participants before the meeting and ask them to upload their own photo into the file manager. This is needed for the check-in.
The training participants often either barely know each other, or have never met before. A round of introductions helps establish trust and to welcome everyone to the beginning of the workshop. The participants are shown in the VR using avatars. In order to gain an even better picture, each person introduces themselves with one or two photos. This can be a portrait or an image that shows the participant doing an activity that describes them particularly well.
After the round of introductions, the workshop leader can ask those present about their expectations for the workshop. This helps to better adjust the content to the participants’ current state of knowledge. Finally, before the training starts, the workshop leader also introduces themselves with one or two images.
Executing a training session in VR
There are many ways to open a topic, for example, by telling the participants a short story. Or: the participants are actively integrated from the beginning. If you are holding an informational meeting about VR, your initial question could be, “What do you already know about the topic of virtual reality?” Draw a small mind map with all the terms the participants can think of. This helps “warm up” the brain and the following information can be processed better.
Preparing content according to the KISS principle
The abbreviation KISS stands for “Keep It Simple and Stupid” or, to put it more nicely, “Keep It Simple and Smart”. Everything can be expressed using simple words. Take some time while preparing the theoretical portion to lay out your content in an understandable manner. Divide your presentation into clearly definable sections. Don’t use any technical terms or foreign words that the participants may not understand. And above all: use the interactive possibilities offered to you by virtual reality.
Here are a few tips:
- Keep your input exciting: If you just read slides, you will lose your participants faster than you want to. Use interactive whiteboards, sticky notes and 3D drawings to visually convey your content.
- Work with multimedia: VR handles multimedia work wonderfully. Include different types of media formats such as PDFs, images and 3D CAD objects in your workshop. Draw in the free space and let your participants actively join in.
- Ask questions: repeatedly throwing in little questions keeps participants engaged: “What virtual reality glasses do you know?” Wait a few seconds to give the participants a chance to answer. Hand signals are done through controllers.
- Quiz elements and games: Do you know the children’s program 1, 2 or 3? The host asks a question and the participants position themselves in a given field depending on whether they chose answer 1, 2 or 3. The correct answer is given after a few seconds. You can create these fields in the room easily with the 3D drawing function in VR.
By the way: sitting in circles promote communication, even in VR. Even if the participants are standing. A semi-circle around the speaker makes sense for lectures so everyone can see the whiteboard. A complete circle makes more sense for discussions.
Find a nice conclusion for your workshop. For example, you can ask the individual participants one or two final questions:
- What did you learn today?
- What could be improved?
You can see that VR offers a plethora of possibilities to make training interactive. Of course, every group and every topic is different. Simply try it out and find what works best for you. Would you like to share your experiences with us?