If you’ve never considered a remote workshop before, you might have been missing out. Some of the world’s largest organizations have been experimenting with digital collaborations for years (see point 6). There are a few obvious reasons for that, including reduced travel costs and increased flexibility. But here are 8 benefits of remote sessions that might surprise you.
1. People aren’t as shy as you think
Big voices can drown out little ones in groups, which often limits a workshop’s potential. We’ve noticed that this is less of a problem in virtual collaborations. With the computer screen as a shield, people feel protected and more open to sharing ideas (just ask internet trolls).
2. Experimentation can be faster
In our experience, collaborating remotely can enable shorter and more frequent sessions, which leads to increased experimentation. Plus, you can create prototypes collaboratively, in real-time – from presentations to websites, and more.
3. Remote programs can be more efficient
4. They can save you time
Remote sessions enable you to share content quickly, organize your thoughts, save time digitizing written ideas and keep a ledger/record of your discussions. Want to recall the clever way a colleague worded their concept? Not sure what the stakeholder or facilitator advised? Simply hit play or Control/Command+F.
5. There’s a digital tool for that
Most analog operations can go digital (for better or worse). And we have a few favorite digital workshop tools to help us make that happen. Depending on your needs, you can try Mural, Miro, Zoom, or Yambla (we’ll link to more in the comments). Just remember that to avoid delays, prep time is vital.
6. Everyone is doing it
IBM, Dell, GitHub, and Intuit are just a few of the large organizations that had been trying out remote collaborations long before they became essential.
7. Networking & unique perspectives
Innovation workshops help connect interesting profiles that wouldn’t normally collaborate. It’s easier to bring busy people together for a remote session versus an in-person one – you don’t need to book plane tickets or ask people to leave home for days on end. The increased flexibility means valuable stakeholders are more likely to say yes.
8. Reduced carbon footprint
Working from home or the office means fewer planes, trains, and automobiles – and the resulting carbon emissions.