Meetings and congresses | The art of successful “comodal” meetings | Press

Telecommuting and back to the office in hybrid mode have complicated the organization of meetings, while team members are rarely present on the same day. Solution: the “comodal” encounter. This still little-known term designates a meeting in which some of the colleagues are on the spot while the others follow by videoconference. Here are four tips for success.

Posted at 13:00

Caroline Rodgers
special collaboration

Think in terms of remote colleagues

Ideally, a co-modal meeting requires the use of a camera, which films participants on the spot, and microphones, to allow remote colleagues to see them clearly and hear their interventions. Therefore, we make sure that the equipment is adjusted so that everyone is clearly visible and audible.

“You also have to count the number of remote colleagues to make sure you don’t forget them, because that’s a risk of this formula,” says Nicolas Sève, a trainer at the HEC Montreal School of Leaders. Remote people are asked to log in early to run some technical tests before starting. If we don’t have a camera to film the room, people in the room will also connect to your computer. »

At the beginning of the meeting, remote people are reminded of the importance of their participation to show that they are not forgotten, and they are appointed to speak during the meeting.

Nicolas Sève, trainer at the HEC Montréal School of Leaders

Assign responsibilities to multiple participants

“It is good to distribute roles and responsibilities to the participants, including those who are online, for example by designating someone who will be responsible for the comodal interaction, other than the moderator, who already has a lot to do”, says Nicolas Sève, who is also co-founder and partner of C3pH.

Another participant will read the comments in the video conferencing app chat, another will take notes, and so on.

Divide the participants into subgroups.

Ideally, comodal meetings should be shorter than others, due to their complexity. However, if the meeting needs to last an hour or more, using meeting rooms in the video conferencing app is a good way to control the pace of the meeting, break the routine, and maintain focus. It also allows remote colleagues and those in the office to discuss in small groups and focus on a particular topic.

The ideal would be to put the remote participants in subgroups with the face-to-face ones, and these will obviously have to connect to the video conference.

Nicolas Sève, trainer at the HEC Montréal School of Leaders

Use interactive tools

Using online tools is a great way to engage everyone, have images accessible to everyone, and grab attention. Useful apps for remote meetings are proliferating in the market.

“There are so-called interactive walls such as Stormboard, Whiteboard, Miro, Jamboard, Mural or Padlet, says Nicolas Sève. These are interactive tables. For example, Whiteboard is like a blackboard that anyone can write on. With Padlet, existing templates can be used to save time. Other types of tools allow for real-time polling, such as Kahoot, Wooclap, or Poll Everywhere, with various features, for example, word clouds that people create together in real time while their colleagues can click to “like” if they agree. »

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