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Running Engaging Meetings on Zoom Just Got Even Better!

October 28, 2020 1:44 pm

The Facilitation First team is so excited about the latest Zoom upgrade (5.3 or higher), we decided to blog about it. With over a hundred virtual sessions hosted on Zoom under our belts, we love how these new features will expand our facilitator toolkit!

The Breakout Rooms feature was already our leading method for dramatically raising the quality of focused, collaborative discussions. Meeting attendees are far more comfortable offering ideas or differing viewpoints in smaller groups – and let’s face it, it’s harder to ‘hide’ in a smaller group.

But did you know that Zoom just launched self-select Breakout Rooms? The meeting host can now launch break outs with different topics or sub-group leaders, and participants can move freely between Breakout Rooms without needing the host’s help.

What meeting process options will this open up? Run a “World Café” or “Wandering Flipcharts” format where you let participants join the discussion topic they find most relevant or feel more equipped to contribute to. Running an ideation session? Have participants take on different perspectives in each Breakout Room, e.g. customer, sales or operations or assign one of the six thinking hats to each room.

This latest upgrade also allows you to drag and drop participant’s video tiles to create a speaking order. The meeting host can choose to have participants follow your view for a custom seating arrangement that everybody sees.  This is especially handy for activities that involve using a round robin or placing participants into virtual groups.

Insider Tip: Zoom does not automatically prompt you to upgrade your application when a new version is available. You need to regularly look for upgrades. (How to check for upgrades)

Looking to increase your confidence and ability to use Zoom Breakout Rooms, polling and other engagement features? Check out our Zoom Basics & Advanced and Mastering Zoom Breakout Rooms & Polling workshops designed for meeting and/or training facilitators. Contact [email protected] to inquire about private training and coaching sessions for you or your team.

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Do you have a unique meeting challenge not covered by one of our blog posts? We’re always looking for different dilemmas to discuss in our articles!