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Business travel had been a big contributor to sales revenue and a good investment to improve employee motivation and engagement. However, the pandemic, put most travel on hold and business travel has been replaced with online workshops, webinars and training sessions.

Running virtual events bring many different challenges for managers and organisers. We spoke to Cheska Teresa, Head of Growth, from Butter.us, who revealed some tips & tricks to organising a successful online workshop.

Butter is an exciting new all-in-one platform built with all the tools you will need to host top quality interactive workshops, training sessions and live courses as smooth as butter.

View the top 3 challenges of conducting an online workshop here.

The 3 big challenges

Holding events online is challenging as they need to be impactful and hold participant’s attention in a fun way, otherwise the event can feel flat and dull compared to being in the same room as the participants. The ‘big 3’ challenges discussed are:

1. Any workshop requires at least 3-7 tools opened simultaneously

And trying to switch between tools can be disruptive to the workshop. A good idea is to have a platform like Butter that integrates most tools like Google Slides, Microsoft Excel, YouTube, Miro, etc. to help with integrating all you need to make a successful workshop.

2. Trying to sync offline & online preparation

Scrambling while you present is the last thing you want. Prepare for the event in advance, for example onboard participants to the tools being used or assign participants to breakout rooms before the event will help with maintaining the momentum.

3. Keeping energy levels up

Cheska recommends keeping a fun and light-hearted elements like GIFs / emojis throughout and ensuring that there is plenty of interaction with participants so that they stay engaged.   

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Plan breaks in your workshop well

Keeping participants constantly engaged is difficult and almost impossible after 45 minutes. If your workshop is going to be longer than needed, you’ll need to organise your material into segments with some breakout time.

Cheska shares that starting the workshop with a fun ice breaker game helps with setting the right tone and momentum throughout. She recommends breaking the agenda into sections and have these energising activities to change the tempo.

Fun games such as Draw Your Character or Slumber Bingo can help re-focus everyone. Breakout rooms also work well and will be super successful if you have been able to give advance information to participants about who else will be in their room.

ice breaker

How to get the right participants to your workshop?

Define the details of your workshop and communicate this clearly to your target participants. State important details like – 1) Time of event in relevant time zones, 2) Will you present your workshop in one language or two, 3) Is this a Live or Pre-recorded or mix event? 4) Will materials be shared after the event, 5) Is this by invite only and many more.

These details are often missed and stating them clearly in the invite, will help convert the right participants to your workshop. You can then seed the invite to the relevant companies or share it out in the community. And if you have the budget, advertise the event to the right target audience.

Communicate with participants before the event

Sending participants a joining pack containing all the information works well and enhances their anticipation. Let participants know who they will be meeting, who are the presenters of the day and what are the expectations of the workshop.

Remind them to check their video, audio levels prior to the start as this will help speed up the onboarding experience and ensure that you get off to a flying start.

Keeping an eye on activities during the workshop

Besides keeping the workshop safe through moderation, good facilitation on ways of participation help participants to ‘stay on track’ ie when Q&As will be answered, where to post your questions, time check and so on.

End the event on a high note

Everyone enjoys leaving a workshop feeling upbeat and appreciates a good follow up after the event. How would you know if your online workshop was successful? A good indicator is when the participants are still talking about it days after the event!

For the full 15 mins interview between TruTrip and Cheska Teresa, Head of Growth at Butter.Us, view below.


Thank you, Butter.us for sharing your tips & tricks and ideas on how to conduct successful online workshops. Give the platform a try and you might just turn into butter too!


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