Notes from the January 31, 2018 webinar
We had our first Green Dot LA webinar from 5:00 to 6:00 on Wednesday, January 31st. If you were not able to join us, it was recorded and we will provide a link to the recorded version as soon as we receive it. HERE is a link to the place for webinar discussions in our Forum, where you can comment on the webinar and make suggestions for future webinar topics.
Seven of us attended, which we all felt was great, given that there had only been 24 hours notice.
We started with an instructive review of the webinar tool and how to use it, nicely done by Kristen. It worked well without any technical glitches.
Our first and largest topic was the status and process of getting instructors ready to do presentations. Some of the items that came up were:
- We are doing well with a solid core of those who took the training in August making good progress.
- There is a predictable pattern for new instructors: (1) focusing first on mastering the content and concerned about 'fidelity' and reproducing the script accurately; (2) then personalizing it without own own 'voice' and anecdotes so that it feels natural and authentic; (3) then getting comfortable with more than one presentation partner and different audiences. Many of us are in Stage 2 of this.
- It gets easier with practice.
- Having a 'deadline' for a scheduled presentation will help as a motivator. That first presentation will seem like a big hurdle but after that it will get easier.
- We are learning from each other and energizing each other at practices.
- Finding time to meet and practice, either as a group or as twosomes has been a challenge. We were encouraged to reach out to each other and find a time to practice.
- It is fine to focus on learning and doing the 15-minute presentation and not feeling pressured to do 60-minute presentations.
- It is also fine to support the presentations by being available to go along, provide feedback, and help manage the activities - but not actually stand up in front of the room and present.
- Presentation skills and activity-management skills are different and we will all find we have different strengths. We can divide our presentations up among the presenting team members based on our skills and comfort. Practicing with different partners is valuable.
- For the 60-minute presentation, the activities should take about 30 minutes, so the 'presentation' itself is 30 minutes or less.
- It is a good idea to have a set of notes folded up in a pocket or easily availabe for security when doing a presentation. (Several of us commented on having experienced going blank in front of an audience.)
- The core components of a 60-minute presentation are:
- Recognizing warning signs (red dots).
- Understanding barriers.
- Having realistic solutions (the 3 Ds) we can use despite barriers.
- Proactive Green Dots.
Our second major topic was communication. Kristen provided a nice overview of a plan and process to meet typical internal and external communication needs and Peter reviewed what we currently have for these:
- Communication about the Transition Team (TT): we have an email list
- Announcements to Instructors and Ambassadors (ambassadors are those who attended the first morning instruction but did not do the full August training): we use Gmail for this.
- A place for collecting and finding Green Dot LA related information about events, meetings, trainings (sometimes called the 'Source of Truth'): we have a private 'intranet' section on our website for this, that requries logging in with username or email address and a password.
- A Forum for ongoing discussions: there is a Forum with sections for discussions grouped by topic on the website.
- A way to communicate about events with the community at large: we have a Facebook page managed by Natalie Bornstein. We can also use our website for this, though at the moment it has limited publicly visible material. (Links to Facebook posts automatically appear at the bottom of the public web page.)
- A way to have a public profile. Susan has orchestrated 3 public events (Simones, Starbucks, Brewery) and more are planned. We will have a quilted wall hanging and a banner for public display at events or in public places. We have business cards and will soon have rack cards and a brochure. We have an FAQ that fits on the front/back of a single page.
- A way for people to ask for more information: we have firstname.lastname@example.org as an email address and requests sent there are triaged to the proper place. This email address is on our business cards, Facebook page, and website. The website has a 'contact us' form and will soon have a 'request information about a presentation' form.
Kristen talked about the value of having a formal communication plan with identified internal and external audiences and tools for those audiences, and regularly reviewing whether or not we were missing important audiences and whether or not our tools were working - and making changes when necessary.
We talked about the plan for regular and ongoing webinars and the importance of tailoring them to our needs. In February the plan is to talk about measuring and evaluating our impact, but suggestions for other topics will help us plan to meet our own needs.