Three Tips for Staying on Time in a Virtual Briefing

Jan 31, 2022

Virtual briefings are sometimes just a few hours and it seems we’re always running behind.  Discussion Leaders are passionate about their topic and now we’ve only given them 30 minutes to get their message across! Here are three ways to gracefully stay on time in a briefing:

1) When you introduce the Discussion Leader, say out loud that you’ll let them know when they have 5 or 10 minutes left to take a question.
Hourglass sitting on a laptop counting down the timeHourglass sitting on a laptop counting down the time
2) Ask for the Discussion Leader’s slide deck before the briefing. It’s helpful to see it in advance, so you’ll know what they plan to cover and how much material they have left at any moment during their topic discussion. When you’re previewing their deck before the briefing and you see more than 1 slide per minute, that’s a red flag. Push back and remind them they also need to allow for discussion time. 

3) Set the expectation that you may be redirecting the Discussion Leader during their discussion or asking them to move ahead. Be ready with a set of phrases that you’re comfortable with:
  • We’ve allocated about 5 more minutes to this topic. May I suggest we move to Q&A?
  • I notice our next Discussion Leader has joined us. Shall we take an action item to continue this discussion in a future meeting?
  • We’ve got just a few minutes left on this topic. Could I ask you to summarize the key takeaways and open it up for questions?
These interventions take confidence, but ultimately, make a difference in the outcome of the briefing for the customer, the account team, and the Discussion Leader themselves. Feel empowered to make a difference!