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What is an All-Hands Meeting?

An All-Hands Meeting is generally an organization wide business meeting in which an executive report is made to employees and stake holders. All-Hands meetings are often held on a regular basis as a means of keeping a large group of people up to date on important events and milestones.

All-Hands Meetings can be virtual (held online and viewed through a browser) or held in conference rooms, corporate cafeterias, hotel ballrooms and across many time zones and continents. An effective All-Hands Meeting usually begins with an important message and includes some form of interaction, often among executives or a team of presenters. The term "Town Hall" meeting is often used interchangeably with All-Hands meeting however a Town Hall meeting is more question and answer based while All-Hands meetings are generally more focused on conveying a message and making a key presentation.

What is a Virtual All-Hands Meeting?

Virtual Meetings are Online (Internet) based meetings that are intended to replicate many of the attributes of an In-Person Meeting. For example, when meeting In-Person in a hotel ballroom or Company cafeteria, an All Hands Meeting often includes remarks and presentations from multiple presenters all related to the meeting’s primary announcement. A Virtual Meeting can offer the same experience for attendees (viewers).

Virtual All Hands Meetings often include presenters that make presentations one after another just as is done in In-Person meetings. The virtual aspect of an online meeting is how that sequence of presenters and their presentations are managed and delivered to the meeting attendees. A well-run virtual meeting follows a timed agenda and script that quickly and seamlessly moves from one presenter to another with presentations that follow along. Both are encoded and transmitted to the meeting attendees using video conferencing tools like Zoom or via a webcast. All this is managed in a way that allows participants (viewers) to follow along remotely on their computers, phones or tablets rather than in-person. While question and answer tools are available for Virtual All Hands Meetings, generally the meeting content is more announcement oriented rather than collaborative.

Event Management teams that specialize in Virtual Meetings can assist with the planning, configuration and management of Virtual All-Hands Meetings including those with a series of presentations, panels of presenters and even pre-recorded video messages and content.

Advantages of an All-Hands Meeting

All Hands means all employees or stake holders and as such a meeting that is intended to include all of these parties has at its core the ability to convey one message to all parties simultaneously. This is a key advantage of an All Hands meeting. The ability to host a meeting for all stakeholders through the Internet as a Virtual All Hands Meeting adds significantly to the benefit of reaching all near and far participants simultaneously.

Parties that are far away (remote) from a primary presentation location can be connected to the All Hands session through the use of video conferencing, live internet-based streaming services and audio teleconferencing. All of these mediums can converge to enable the All Hands Meeting to connect to many participants simultaneously and at low cost.

Disadvantages of an All-Hands Meeting

All Hands Meetings can be complex to organize whether they are in a physical location with attendees in an audience or online with viewers attending through a browser as a Virtual meeting. For physical meetings, a common initial problem is locating a facility in which to hold the All Hands Meeting. Beyond the primary or "home" facility at which presentations are made, coordinating remote sites, for far away participants, and the method of conveying a message from the home facility to these sites can be complex.

Virtual All Hands Meetings require additional planning for transitions between presenters, which themselves are usually in separate locations. Additionally, and not insignificantly, some meeting attendees will require help using their phones, computers or tablets to see and hear the meeting. So, while virtual meetings can be cost effective and far reaching, they may leave some participants out due to technical problems with the user device.

Event planners and specialists in video and audio communications can assist in overcoming some of the challenges of running an All Hands Meeting. TKO Video Communications specializes in this area and can help overcome the challenges of organizing and conducting your All Hands Meeting whether the meeting is Virtual or In-Person.

Get started planning your All Hands Meeting today