How To Use Video To Transform Your Employee Meetings

Engaging your audience during a meeting is important to drive action. A 2016 Gallup poll revealed only 13 percent of workers worldwide are engaged. Training with video has come a long way in recent years, and today it’s an ongoing process that offers opportunities to enhance engagement and increase audience interest. Most people are visual learners, so watching videos can prove easier to follow than lectures. Make the most of your video presentations and transform your meetings with these key tips.

Prepare by Practicing

Human resources managers and professionals can do a ton of preparation before a meeting to make it effective and efficient, and practicing is especially important when presenting new or vital information via video. To avoid awkward moments of silence when you’re starting your presentation or transitioning into your video content, be sure you’re intimately familiar with the video you’re sharing. Prep a list of questions you think employees might ask, and practice how you’ll answer – before the meeting. This includes working on how you will introduce your topic and video presentation as well as what you want to say immediately after it ends.

Capture Your Audience’s Attention From the Start

When you’re introducing your topic or video, use tactics that will capture your audience’s attention from the beginning. One of the most compelling ways to capture your employees’ attention is with a brief but memorable story that helps lead you into the video. You can try humor if the topic is casual and the group is tight-knit. However, use it sparingly and responsibly with the right tone. If this seems like a good approach for your company and team, you may want to consider consulting with experts with humor writing experience.

If humor isn’t appropriate, consider posing questions to your audience and following up with a statistic if your topic is thought-provoking or if your goal is to persuade your audience to take a certain action. You can also use your introduction to surprise your audience with the answer to a question they assume they know the answer to, but actually don’t, thus providing the basis for the information in your video.

Create Supplementary Materials When Necessary

Videos are powerful for sharing information, but your employees may want a reference point for later. Consider creating posters or handouts or other materials to provide additional details on the topic you’re covering. It’s always smart to reinforce the concepts for a time after you’ve shown the video, as it’s during this time that team members are really thinking about what you’ve presented.

Consider Your Audience

If your budget allows, consider custom-produced video to really connect. If enough of your audience has a first language other than English, you may want to have your video produced in that language, too. Choosing to show video that reflects your industry – be it health care, transportation, manufacturing or any other specialized area – helps your audience connect with your message. Similarly, if you have the ability to hand-pick the narrator or cast for your video to match the demographics of your employees, you will find that your message is heard and understood effortlessly. What’s more, these accommodations also demonstrate empathy and connection to your team members – a genuine sign of respect for the contributions those employees make to the Company.

Stop the Video and Answer Questions When Appropriate

It’s important to pay attention to whether your audience is engaged in your video. Look for sidebar conversations; this can be a clear indication that the video has brought up questions to be answered. In this case, stopping your video to address these concerns is appropriate. It’s also important to take time to answer questions post-video, even if the subject at hand is volatile, such as in the case of a heated union organizing drive. If the topic does get out of hand, make clear rules on when everyone can speak. Without rules, time can easily get wasted during the meeting.

RELATED: The Employee Engagement Journey – A Blueprint to Building Employee Advocates

Follow Up

Just because the video presentation and meeting are complete doesn’t mean your presentation is over. It’s important to follow up to find out if your meeting and the use of the videos was effective. You can connect with employees in informal one-on-one feedback sessions, or even take surveys or have post-video discussions. Gaining feedback from your team members is vital to ensure they understood the material you presented. Also consider the idea that if the video was effective enough, it may still be on employees’ minds days after you’ve shown it. Be open to questions and interaction on the topic whenever your audience needs it.

Final Thoughts

Whether you decide to use videos to enhance your meetings to discuss touchy employee-employer relationship subjects, such as the legalities of union organizing and union avoidance, layoffs or harassment, it’s vital to have a plan that will help you make your meetings effective. Prepare in advance of your meeting, including playing your video and practicing your speech. Also, consider how you will open your meeting to save time. Follow up and ensure that employees are fully engaged and have their questions answered.