The Microsoft Teams Live format was selected to ensure that as many people as possible could see the presentation and participate. Other meeting platforms, like Zoom, have caps on attendance, and we knew that there was potentially a significant interest in the first meeting. We chose a platform that had a higher capacity to allow as many people as possible to attend and view the information.
We also chose this specific Q&A format to allow for as many questions as possible to be asked. Taking verbal questions following our presentation would have limited the total number of questions taken.
While many of us use virtual platforms for small group meetings, this type of large group event (the Aug. 27, 2020, event had well over 100 attendees) is not typical for us. As we have all likely experienced, even in small groups there can be issues with background noise and interruptions. We are open to suggestions on ways to improve future meetings in a way that maximizes the opportunity for participation. We also hope that we don’t need to do virtual meetings much longer!
With all of that said, we shifted the format of the Jan. 14, 2021, meeting slightly. We utilized the Zoom Webinar platform, to allow for administrators to open microphones individually for those that choose to state questions verbally. We also used the chat function to collect written questions. The intent for this was to allow open dialog while still answering as many questions as possible.