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How to Be More Effective Online

Staff Writer


Digital Energy Summit

Trying to land your key messages is tough. Communicating online can be tougher.

At Digital Energy 2021, Bob Keiller and Derrick Thomson will explore how to be more effective when engaging teams and audiences online.

Picture the scene: It’s 2019 and you are in a daily team meeting…

People are animated about the items on the list – some are standing, one is sketching out some ideas on a whiteboard and others are leaning in to listen.

Two colleagues are having a separate conversation, voices are getting raised and people are talking over each other – not in a rude or nasty way but trying to make sure they are heard – it’s exhilarating, it’s fun and it is very productive because we always agree on the next step before we move on. The whole meeting never takes longer than 20 minutes.

The same scene in 2021…

We are on a Teams Meeting or a Zoom Call – only one person can talk at a time and the shared whiteboard facility is clunky and doesn’t work for those who could only dial in on audio.

The meeting is low energy – some people have their cameras turned off. The meeting takes longer as everyone has their say on every item. It takes longer to reach a consensus on decisions. This is not much fun. It takes a full hour.

If you need to get your message across online, you need to up your game.

When we work closely with a team, we get to know each other, we earn respect and trust. We learn about each other’s sensitivities and habits – we adjust our own behaviours to fit in – subconsciously and instantaneously.

When we are part of an online team it is harder – it could be that we have never met some of the people on the call. We have never shared a laugh or a coffee so we might not know them too well.

Areas of focus

  • How do we build rapport when it is difficult to pick up on non-verbal reactions from the audience and attention spans seem to be shorter than ever?
  • How do we get the audience to listen to us, to trust us, to hear our key messages and to remember them?
  • How do we package our messages so that they are likely to be authentic, compelling and memorable?
  • How do we persuade people to support our recommendations?


Bob Keiller and Derrick Thomson are two experienced business leaders and business coaches who help organisations to grow. Bob has led various organisations in the energy sector and Derrick’s experience comes from the world of broadcasting.

They operate on a not-for-profit business using any fees they earn to provide pro-bono support to charities, social enterprises and early-stage entrepreneurs.

They get asked to help in many areas – especially business storytelling and pitching and have reviewed hundreds of online presentations since the global outbreak of coronavirus forced us all into new ways of working.

Digital Energy Summit 2021 | Join the Conversation

Bob & Derrick will be hosting a 30-minute masterclass on how to be more effective online at the upcoming Digital Energy Summit on 22 April.

Register now to secure your free place at DIGIT’s Digital Energy Summit 2021:

*The conference is free to attend for all relevant IT, Digital & C-level personnel from the end-user community. Charges apply for IT vendors, sales personnel, consultants and recruiters.

DIGIT Staff Writer Robot

Staff Writer

Staff Writer - DIGIT

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