Education is the cornerstone of any Toastmasters’ journey.
The skills that Toastmasters learnt through their club’s transition to online meetings, supporting members over the last year, have truly left a legacy in our growth journey.
Nostalgic to return to in-person meetings, or indeed maybe meeting in person for the first time (for recently chartered clubs), we are again blazing a trail to learn new skills – that of hybrid meetings.
A hybrid meeting is any combination of in-person and online or remote participants. Be open to experimenting to find out what works for your club members.
This is a club decision, where Provincial protocols should be considered. When club members vote to have hybrid meetings, be creative; seek to explore what your club constitutes a hybrid meeting.
Kindly note the following when considering moving to hybrid meetings:
- The wellbeing of all club members is vital
- The club must adhere to local and Provincial policies on in-person gatherings
- The club members must vote to move forward with hybrid meetings
- Room rental agreements, associated services, and costs may have changed
- In-person meeting locations must have a strong and stable internet connection
- In-person meetings will not mirror a club member’s experience prior to the pandemic
- Online members, in a hybrid meeting, must actively and intentionally be included and engaged. Be open to forging a new norm for your club!
- In-person meetings require the Sergeant at Arms, or a Toastmaster, to arrive early to set up the room and equipment needed to support a hybrid meeting
- Seek out club members that have the technical expertise and/or are willing to set up and support the computer equipment for hybrid meetings
- The club has access to the necessary computer devices or is willing and able to purchase
- Hybrid meetings will draw on in-person and online experience to equally engage members and respond to unexpected situations
When club members vote, during their business meeting, to conduct hybrid meetings, please remember to document the decision in the minutes and update the club constitution with Toastmasters International.
The following resources are available to you when considering a hybrid meeting:
- Hybrid Harmony
- Hybrid meeting setup: What equipment do you really need?
- Hybrid meeting with Zoom: how to set up your room
- Echo in hybrid meetings: how to stop audio feedback on Zoom
- Hybrid meeting audio: how to sound great online AND in the room
- Lead a hybrid meeting – 5 techniques you need to know
- Your top 10 hybrid meeting questions answered
- How to setup a Hybrid Toastmasters Session – Full Presentation
- To Hybrid or Not to Hybrid? That is the question
Also, a club may vote to remain online as a virtual club; this decision should also be documented in the minutes and club constitution with Toastmasters International. Whether hybrid, online, or in-person a club always remains a member of the District they were formed in.
Most importantly, it is the club members that discuss and vote on how the club will proceed to continue to be inclusive, supporting members’ engagement and development through Toastmasters.
Created by Deridor Collier DTM, Program Quality Director 2021-2022