Keep your virtual meetings engaging with breakout rooms

Create breakthrough thinking in virtual meetings...start using breakout rooms for greater engagement and productivity.

Last month our insight session shared useful tips for facilitating effective virtual meetings.

It explored how to use the principles from the RapidConsensus course in a virtual environment, and we discovered a few things too...

We were surprised to hear that most people don’t use breakout rooms in virtual meetings. It’s such a valuable tool for creating high engagement as well as gaining better results.

Break it down for me

Breakout rooms are the equivalent of small groups/tables of people in face to face workshops; one of the main principles of RapidConsensus is breaking larger groups into smaller groups as it helps create:

  • More equitable and deeper dialogue

  • Breakthrough insights

  • Better-informed decisions

Key benefits

Creates more dialogue:

When you arrange people into smaller groups, they are able to engage and talk more.

Virtual meetings can be difficult as when one person is speaking everyone else has to listen, and if two people talk over the top of each other, no one can hear.

This becomes more pronounced in a virtual setting than in a physical setting as we lose those in-person cues and connections. Having small break-out rooms of 3 to 4 people within your virtual meetings encourages more dialogue as in these smaller groups, participants will have the opportunity to speak and share their thoughts constructively.

Increases engagement:

The very act of moving people into virtual breakout rooms forces people to engage. Firstly, participants need to engage by actively clicking a button to join their breakout room which changes state. Secondly, the smaller group size allows visibility where it becomes fairly obvious if certain people aren’t participating. Much harder to sit back and zone out when there are only 3 of you in the discussion, rather than in the larger group meeting. Joining the breakout room becomes a trigger for those to re-engage, or you as the facilitator to check-in and bring them back into the process.

In summary, the helpful insight from this session is that using breakout rooms creates far greater engagement when you are facilitating a group. It provides more interaction, giving everyone space to share their input and helping you achieve more effective virtual meetings.

We encourage you to give it a go, the outcome being you feel comfortable in routinely using breakout rooms as they deliver a far better result than trying to work with everyone in the main session.

#vitualmeetings #groupengagement #breakoutrooms

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