You can be a Zoom Master too!
Does your club have a Zoom Master for club meetings?
Welcome to the new norm-Virtual Toastmaster Club meetings. Over the past year, many of us have been zooming in virtually for club meetings, contests, educational and other Toastmaster events. In the real world, no meeting could run without a Toastmaster. I suggest that all Toastmaster clubs where virtual meetings are held should have a Zoom Master of the Day (ZMOD).
In the last year, we have learnt how to participate in a virtual club meeting, how to use reactions, and how to provide quality presentations using audio and visual aids. The next step in this skill development is to learn how to support an online meeting. Here are three reasons being a Zoom Master is an important skill to learn
3 reasons why you should learn how to be a Zoom Master
- It will help you when you conduct a virtual live meeting of your own to people outside of Toastmasters such as conducting a coaching call, product demonstration, or live tutorials of any kind.
- You may be asked to be a Zoom Master for an outside-the club event hosted by someone else (such as Contests, Educational Workshops etc). Once you have aced the art of Zooming, you may even be asked to help by your own club’s members.
- The most important reason in my opinion is to make sure your club has virtual meetings that run smoothly. At my club, Dynamically Speaking, we have a ten-member Zoom Team; members of this team take turns being the ZMOD. All these members learned their Zoom skills since the beginning of the pandemic.
Before you can be a Zoom Master for an online club meeting, make sure you have access to be the Host for the meeting you are supporting. Carry a checklist with you to keep track of things you need to take care of. (Check if your club has one, if not create it yourself by noting the events that happen at a typical meeting).
Here is an example from Dynamically Speaking
- Arrive to the meeting early. Be alert, calm and turn off all distractions. You will need to stay focused during the entire meeting. Ensure you are designated as the “host”. Set the screen view for “gallery view” with a list of participant names on the right hand side. This way you can keep an eye on who is attending and whether their mic is muted or note. If someone gets disconnected, you can let them back into the meeting.
- Pre-meeting: Ensure all participants with a meeting role re-name themselves.
- Pre-meeting: Copy and paste the meeting agenda to the chat, so all participants can review as required.
- Pre-meeting: Ask all speakers if they need to share a screen for their presentation. If “yes”, give them co-host permission.
- Five minutes into the meeting, ensure the waiting room is enabled.
- Keep an eye out for late-comers and let them in (if known to the club). Welcome all late-comer guests with a healthy dose of skepticism. Also watch for “Zoom-bombers” and send them a message if unsure who they are.
- Disturbing background noise: Mute the participant where the noise is coming from (unless they are speaking)
- Speeches: Record the speech to the cloud. Start recording as the Toastmaster is announcing the speaker. Once the speaker starts speaking, PIN them so we only see them while they speak. Once they are finished their speech, UNPIN them, then stop recording after the Toastmaster offers their closing statement.
- For speakers needing to share their screen: Grant them co-host permission (see #4 above), record the speech to the cloud and start recording as the Toastmaster is announcing the speaker. At this point, create a split screen so we can see the speech presentation on the left and the speaker on the right. Once they are finished their speech, UNPIN them and then stop recording after the Toastmaster offers their closing statement.
- After the meeting ends, the Zoom Master role can be handed off to Ron for the post meeting social visit.
I hope this alleviates the fear of trying out a Tech role; With practice, you can learn to be a Zoom Master relatively easily. Happy Zooming!
Co-President | Fluor Communicators | District 42