How Event Assist Really Helps

How Event Assist Really Helps

Struggling to juggle all the roles and responsibilities that come with hosting engaging online and virtual events, but not sure if you need assistance from event planners or event services? Let’s talk.

Virtual events are increasingly important in every industry, company, and social circle. Here’s how event assist really helps.

More Hands Make Less Work

We know you’ll be doing your best to juggle hosting, moderating, sharing on social media and chat channels, monitoring sessions, and fixing last-minute or unexpected glitches. But you don’t have to juggle everything alone.

Hiring a skilled Event Assist team can not only take away your feelings of having to be in all places at all times, but they can also allow you more time to enjoy the great event you have put together.

Event Assist services can also help you make the most of your event platform, from breakout sessions to educational and entertainment content to a virtual game night or Meet and Greet. They are experts on the topics and tools within your chosen collaboration platform whether it’s Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Cisco Webex, Adobe Connect, Lifesize, Amazon Chime, or Vbrick.

Damage Control is Much Easier to Manage

Even the best-laid plans have hiccups. And virtual events are no exception.

Rather than scrambling to remove accidental filters like this and this, or to restore a presenter to a virtual event, you can pass these duties off to the pros and unburden yourself, allowing you to participate in more meaningful ways in your virtual events.

Event Assist Services Include Training

No one could have predicted this crazy virtual event boom, and as such many people are struggling to keep up with the ins and outs of these rapidly evolving tools.

Hiring Event Assist services can also include training. While you plan and design your event from top to bottom, an experienced virtual event planner can also help guide you in the use of different tools, applications, and accessories within your chosen platform.

Post-Session Support

Just like no one likes to clean up after the party’s over, the post-event work is always better when it’s done by someone else!

Event assist services like those offered by Meet Me In The Cloud can include things like recordings of specific events or sessions, attendance and attention reporting, Q&A or chat transcripts, and additional support like editing recordings and more. Helping you gather important event metrics for even greater success in the future.

MMITC Event Assist Resources

Still working through some kinks in your virtual event planning? Meet Me In The Cloud works diligently to stay up-to-date on virtual event trends and best practices. Here are some quick resources from our blog for you to check out:

3 Virtual Event Planning To-Don’ts – There are tons of tips and tricks for the “Dos” of a virtual event, but what about the “Don’ts”?

How to Build Connections in Meetings & Virtual Events – Just because the event is virtual doesn’t mean we can’t create and optimize online spaces to foster connections.

Fostering Inclusion & Collaboration in Virtual Meetings – Battle Zoom fatigue with these great tips for amping up engagement at your next virtual event.

Take Advantage of Event Assist Services – Let us walk you through the full Event Assist process with Meet Me In The Cloud.

Move Your In-Person Large Event Online – Pivoting your large events to online platforms is a big deal. Here are some tips for transitioning smoothly.

Virtual Events You Should Be Hosting – Nearly all in-person events can be recreated online, and here are some great examples of what your next online event should be.

10 Quick Tips for Your Online Event – These small tips are great quick reminders for improving your next virtual event.

3 Considerations for Successful Online Events – This article walks you through some great ways to make sure you are tailoring each event to fulfill its purpose and meet the needs of your audience.

Elevate Your Next Virtual Event

Whether it’s a quick team meeting, family reunion, or annual corporate conference, Meet Me In The Cloud has helped many businesses like yours optimize their virtual events with Event Assist Services. For more insight into our services, check out our Event Assist Data Sheet.

Whether you need training and education, event assistance, or other collaboration-based support and services, contact us today.

Collaboration Equity: Achieving Hybrid Success

Collaboration Equity: Achieving Hybrid Success

The hybrid workforce is the new future of work. It will mean merging the old with the new – creating spaces for collaboration within physical office spaces as well as using collaboration tools to fill gaps between onsite and remote workers.

But how do we achieve hybrid success while hosting and attending meetings? Here are some tips.

Replace Uncertainty of the Unknown with Training & Insight

Collaboration equity is a difficult concept to grasp – how do we mitigate uncertainty around a system that will look so different from company to company?

Collaboration equity is the ability to contribute equally, regardless of location, role, experience level, language, and device preference.

To achieve hybrid success, training is a must. But we’re not talking about standardized, mass-produced training modules or online skill-building courses. To train your employees effectively, you must first have insight into their current ability and aptitude levels.

Collaboration tools are vast and ever-changing. That means everyone on your staff will have different comfort levels with each application. This is similar to hybrid work models, where everyone has a different setup in terms of in-house workdays and remote workdays.

Creating collaboration equity means being open to learning what works and what doesn’t.

Improve IT Practices

There are tons of great ways to manage IT needs in a hybrid workplace.

For example, migrating every business capability and piece of data to the cloud is not often the best approach. Take some time to discuss, with other executives and your employees, which functions, applications, and information are must-haves in the cloud, and which can continue to be stored on intranets or in-house servers.

Before you integrate a hybrid IT system, however, you should do some testing and training to make sure your IT support staff doesn’t get overwhelmed with issues and requests immediately after implementing the hybrid system.

Time and training are important components in achieving hybrid success in IT areas as well.

Remember: It’s About Balance

The hybrid work environment, just like the newly ramped-up remote work environment, won’t be identical for everyone. But it should always be equitable. Using collaboration tools to bridge gaps in face-to-face communication should be a priority.

Also, remember that these differences in what each employee’s workday looks like can be hard to reconcile at first. Before the pandemic, there was a strong preconceived notion that working from home meant that your employees would be more distracted and less productive as a whole. But a quick Google search for WFH statistics will show that not only is that not true, but the opposite is often the more common case.

Achieving hybrid success through collaboration equity may seem like a daunting task, but if you do it right, you’ll see positive outcomes across all your business departments.

Conquer the New Normal with MMITC

Unsure how to get started on your road to achieving hybrid success? Meet Me In The Cloud is equipped with solutions to help you foster technology adoption and plan, set up, and execute flawless meetings and events. For more information, check out our Event Assist and collaboration technology adoption services.

Have questions? Contact us today!

Full-Circle Collaboration

Full-Circle Collaboration

Collaboration tools have exploded in popularity. Because of this, there are now even more updates and features for you to wade through as you try to keep your meetings on task and your events on schedule.

According to an article by FinancesOnline, the leading attributes of great workplaces include “promotes team building and collaboration” and “provides the latest technology.” And the leading collaboration and communication market growth segments can be found in teamwork apps and communications platform-as-a-service arenas.

With all this growth and change, how can your business stay on top of these trends while also navigating competitive industries during a global pandemic?

That’s why partnering with Meet Me In The Cloud is more important than ever. MMITC has deep expertise, proven methodology, and proven results in a variety of services, including training and technology adoption, event assist services, and much more.

Here are some of the services we offer that can help you address full-circle collaboration needs, all with white-glove support from MMITC.

Collaboration Services

Meet Me In The Cloud is a Customer Experienced Lifecycle Advisor, which means we have been working in the collaboration tool industry for many years. We have created a 6-step proven methodology that drives adoption with measurable results. Here are some of the collaboration services we offer:

  • Workplace Productivity Solutions – Cloud-based shared workplace solutions take everyone in your organization to the next level with greater integration of web and video conferencing, telephony, instant messaging, and email. MMITC can help choose the best tools and platforms for your business, ensure your tools are cyber secure, and help increase productivity within your teams and your workplace.
  • Adoption Acceleration Services – Our collaboration tool expertise and proven methodology can bring your entire team up to speed quickly, build customer loyalty, and realize a faster ROI in your technology investment. We can help your organization achieve full adoption in 60 days.
  • Project Management – Utilize our team’s deep expertise to help you achieve the business goals of your collaboration technology projects.
  • Change Management – Right now, collaboration tools are changing at an unprecedented rate. MMITC can focus efforts to prepare, equip, and support your team members to adopt these changes.

Managed & Event Assist Services

It is becoming more and more difficult to decipher which collaboration tool on the market is the best for your business’s events and operations. And as more events are held virtually, having good tools, training, and expertise are tantamount to your business success. Meet Me In The Cloud has a range of great managed services to fulfill your needs:

  • Customer Success Services – Efficiently onboard your customers with MMITC’s comprehensive plan, clear technical requirements, product training, and ongoing customer interaction.
  • Event Assist Services – From industry conferences to executive and team meetings, MMITC’s team of professional Producers are skilled in the production of flawless online events and will ensure your next highly visible virtual event meets your business objectives.

 Meet Me In The Cloud also offers consulting services, to help drive faster adoption of your collaboration investment, and cybersecurity services, to protect all of your online and cloud-based data, email, and users safe across multiple networks, devices, and apps.

Training & Education

A tool is only as good as its user. And every business has employees who are more comfortable learning about and using online tools, and those who may require more or different training to reach full adoption. That’s why Meet Me In The Cloud offers varied and tailored solutions for your training and education needs: 

  • E-Learning Offerings – Online learning is a safe and effective way to train employees – if you know how to do it. MMITC’s e-learning courses help accelerate the adoption process of your collaboration platform by offering an interactive learning approach.
  • Live Learning Services – MMITC offers online, real-time training services.
  • Onsite Training Services – we can also come to you! Our onsite training services provide in-depth education in a familiar environment for your employees.
  • Microlearning Library – This is perfect if you have a new hire or a small number of employees who need to go over certain aspects of a collaboration tool, but who don’t need full training.
  • Train-the-Trainer Programs – We can help you prepare team members who are or will be in charge of training others.

Many of our courses are self-paced and easy to tailor to a specific employee’s skill level and background of experience. 

Achieve Your Desired Business Outcomes

Meet Me In The Cloud is now a Certified Cisco Collaboration Reseller, which means we can now offer full-circle collaboration, from purchase to adoption. To set up your Collaboration Discovery Call, please reach out to Charles Plaza at charles@meetmeinthecloud.com.

Have more questions about any of the services we talked about above? Meet Me In The Cloud wants to hear from you. Feel free to check out any of the links to our services, or contact us today to schedule a consultation!

Benefits of Multi-Platform Virtual Events

Benefits of Multi-Platform Virtual Events

We’ve talked previously about why you should move your large event online. And you know by now that virtual events have a ton of benefits. But after a year of pandemic life and the subsequent mountain of changes that every collaboration tool has implemented, more and more companies are opting to create multi-platform virtual events (as if single-platform events weren’t hard enough).

What is a Multi-Platform Event?

Many industries have been focusing on multi-platform content for the last few years. Multi-platform events are events that deliver a range of content across different platforms, “utilizing television, the Internet, mobile phones, and digital and interactive screen services,” according to Taylor & Francis Online.

In easy terms, event planners are now using more than one collaboration tool or application to either a.) host the same content and services on different tech mediums (mobile, desktop, etc), b.) use different apps, websites, and online tools to create a more diverse experience, or c.) do a bit of both.

For example, the 2021 Affordable Housing Association of Indiana’s annual spring conference is being held virtually, using Zoom and the Whova event and conference mobile app. And line dancers from all over the world have attended six (so far) Digital Dance Weekend events that are hosted on Facebook but also feature “social dancing” and demos on Youtube.

These multi-platform events allow attendees to customize and tailor their own experience to ensure they are making the most of every virtual event. They also allow you, the event organizer, to offer unique, multi-faceted resources and interactive and collaborative content with your event. Let’s talk about some of the benefits of having a multi-platform virtual event.

Reach a More Technologically Diverse Audience

So much of our lives, both personal and professional, are housed within our mobile devices – especially our cell phones. And with the world becoming more and more work-from-home-friendly, mobile devices are becoming more essential as work tools, too.

Planning multi-platform virtual events (and using collaboration tools that can do some of this work for you) means you can be inclusive to a more technologically diverse audience. If your board meeting is being held virtually, giving your attendees the ability to choose their platform preference is extremely helpful.

This also means that, for larger events, more people will be able to attend because they can tailor their experience of your event to fit in with their lifestyles and schedules.

Decrease the Time You Spend Worrying About Finding the “Perfect” Tool

Collaboration platforms like Zoom, Webex, Microsoft Teams, and more are constantly changing to keep up with customer demand and to stay relevant to their target market. But what happens when you are planning an event and none of the collaboration tools have all the functions and capabilities you need?

Another great benefit of multi-platform virtual events is the ability to confidently choose a good, but not perfect, host platform without worrying about how platform 1 has this but not that, and platform 2 has that but not this. Instead of settling for almost perfect, you can pair top collaboration tools with top resources like industry- or function-specific apps, websites, and more

Reduce that stress by adding outside apps to your host platform (many collaboration tools are expanding these capabilities often) or by just letting your attendees know you will be pairing a collaboration tool to an unrelated app or website (as seen in the examples we mentioned above).

Increase the Level of Interactivity

With bigger events, a specific collaboration tool may possess all of the capabilities you want, but not in the form you would prefer for your event. For example, if you are hosting a large industry conference, having all videos of speakers, session descriptions, and session resources on one computer screen may be difficult for people to follow along.

Creating multiple platform availability and including apps and tools outside of the videoconferencing app you’re using can help your attendees create their own, preferred setup for interacting. Perhaps an attendee wants to collaborate with someone they met at a networking session, but they can only do that if it happens during another informative session they wanted to attend. By offering multi-platform events, your attendees can get more bang for their buck and will be less likely to miss out on important information and events.

Find Your Multi-Platform Event Service Team

Meet Me In The Cloud is the perfect partner for your next multi-platform virtual event. Check out our Event Assist Services packages, or learn more about how we help you plan and execute a virtual event that meets all your goals.

Whether you need training and education, event assistance, or other collaboration-based support and services, contact us today.

How COVID Reshaped College Pt. 3 – Community

How COVID Reshaped College Pt. 3 – Community

Colleges have faced unique challenges in 2020. Many campuses are the physical space in which their students study, work, live, and play.

When COVID-19 emerged, the shutdowns forced higher education institutions to find a path forward. That path included all of the obstacles that workplaces, housing complexes, and schools were subjected to. So what did that path look like, and what changes may become permanent in post-secondary settings?

In this limited blog series, we will take a look at how COVID-19 changed higher education in three areas: classes, physical spaces, and community.

The Chronicle of Higher Education released their latest issue, “Rethinking Campus Spaces: How to Prepare for the Future of Learning and Work” (available for purchase here). In this issue, they spoke with leaders of colleges that had decided to bring people back to campus after the shutdowns in the spring of 2020. This study will provide the framework for this limited blog series.

In part 3, we’ll discuss the changes surrounding the campus community that took place in 2020, and what that will look like post-COVID.

Community and COVID-19

One of the ultimate goals of a college or campus experience is for students to discover and foster the communities they want to be a part of in the future. While the impact of COVID-19 on the community aspect of college campuses is not as easily discernable as the changes in classes or physical space, it is still very present.

One of the best community-building aspects of on-campus interaction is the loss of “productive collisions,” according to Greg Havens, planner and architect for Sasaki Associates.

Productive collisions are the moments that happen in the cafeteria, or the few minutes before or after a class, where students and faculty share more casual discussions of class material that result in new projects or insights being discovered, or new relationships being formed. And these moments are very difficult to replicate using any form of collaboration technology.

So many spaces, like dorm lounge areas, libraries, tech or computer labs, and more are built around the idea that proximity can foster collaboration and also create a sense of community. During the pandemic, colleges had to actively create environments that eliminate these casual interactions in order to maintain safe and socially distant standards.

Student housing is one of the biggest sources of community in college, and that has been heavily impacted by the transitions of most or all classes to online forums. Officials at California State University have found “better retention rates among students who live on campus, with roommates, in their first years.”

2020 has been a tough year for everyone, and college students were just as affected as any other peer group. The desire to go to college is one that can be influenced by many things, but one of the driving forces behind that transition to post-secondary education is the relationships and communities you get to be part of.

When surveyed, “college students ranked community as the second-most important priority for their college experience, after academic matters.” And when asked what the most difficult part of COVID-19 life was, the most popular answer was “separation from friends.”

This is not to detract from the immense effort that administrators and educators have put in to try and mitigate some of these difficulties. Many community-based events have been replicated online, and schools continue to look for unique ways to engage campus crowds safely, with drive-in events and outdoor performances.

Academic advising, mental health appointments, and financial aid services are all being offered online as well since access to campus offices has been throttled down to reduce the spread of the coronavirus.

So what does the future of the campus community look like?

Building Community after COVID

Many of the solutions that have been implemented throughout the last year will continue to be used long after the COVID-19 pandemic recedes. The offering of online administrative and academic advisor services will still be available because having more access to campus-based services is always beneficial.  

But community is something we all crave, so the physical and in-person interactions between students, faculty, and staff will come back right alongside all of the online options as well.

It’s very likely that offices and classrooms will continue being restructured to accommodate academic teams, department crossover, and other educational socialization.

As for housing, many colleges are creating or restructuring dorm spaces to accommodate more apartment-style housing and nano suites, but this also means that more emphasis will need to be put on creating new, meaningful areas for students to gather.

Some colleges are even taking steps to lessen the crossover between college students and the college town, to prevent the spread of COVID-19, by adding more restaurant and even grocery store options to campus life. There will likely be a heavy focus on creating more spaces and reasons for students to stay on campus, in the future.

Build the Community You Want, with Collaboration Tools That Support You

Tomorrow’s classroom experience will still need a few things – technology, collaboration, and people. But people and technology aren’t always perfectly matched. So what can you do to build a great community online? Explore Meet Me In The Cloud’s managed services and collaboration services.

Whether you need training and education, event assistance, or other collaboration-based support and services, contact us today.

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