Pros and Cons of Hybrid Training

The New Hybrid World

Hybrid meetings are now a thing and likely to be with us for the foreseeable future.

Understanding the advantages and drawbacks of mixing people in-person and in-zoom can go a long way towards making the experience less stressful for you and more enjoyable for those attending.

So here is a list of pros and cons.

Pros and Cons of Hybrid Meetings


  1. Zoom attendees feel part of an in-person event.

This is a major achievement when accomplished. The aim is to keep all remote attendees engaged to the extent that they feel they may be called on at any time to comment or participate.

2. Vulnerable people can attend.

This is a huge plus for people who have had months of feeling isolated and excluded.

3. Distant people can attend.

For people who have long journeys to get to Head Office, this could become their preferred method of attending.

4. Overseas people can attend.

People all over the world can log in and be part of the training without the additional costs of travel, hotels and per diems.

5. Busy people can attend.

For busy people, circumstances can change. Having the luxury of changing from remote to in-person and vice versa is a real boon.

6. Chance for in-person attendees to “get together”.

This is great for those who are there IRL, but a well-run hybrid session should also be able to include remote attendees in that feeling of being together.

7. You don’t have to wait.

Postponing training till everyone can get together may mean postponing for many months to come. Hybrid mean you can create something as soon as it is wanted and needed.


1. Zoom attendees feel less involved.

People are still treating remote attendees as observers rather than active participants. Remote attendees are used to the “webinar experience” where their involvement may be limited to questions in the chat.

Indeed, they may switch off their camera, take a phone call, do some other work on the side.

In fact, it’s possible to alienate them even more by asking them to mute themselves.

2. Difficult to setup technically

Running the in-person part of the meeting may be disrupted by the need to set up Zoom connections and control the Zoom interactions, which could, in turn, make the face-to-face people feel alienated.

3. More equipment is required.

To make it work at the very least, you will need a large TV and an external camera. As explained above, every extra piece of equipment means your attention is split between running a successful meeting and coping with technical glitches.

4. Someone needed to look after remote participants.

To make a hybrid meeting successful you may have to have a dedicated moderator to manage what remote participants see.

5. Zoom experience and knowledge required.

You will need considerable practice running Zoom. You need to practise spotlighting, setting up rooms, monitoring rooms, managing sound quality, handling delay and choosing what the Zoom audience sees.

Giving Hybrid Meetings a Try

For inexperienced facilitators, you will need to keep the level of technology to the minimum, just a laptop and a large screen.

However, these three simple things can help you get started.

  1. Standing between, and to one side of the in-person audience and the screen audience and sharing your eye contact between one and the other makes a big difference.
  2. Using the names of remote attendees makes them feel individually included and not part of an anonymous group.
  3. Avoid group questions such as:

“Does anyone in our remote audience have anything to add?”

Rather be direct with no reference to their not being in the room, saying something like:

“Nadia, what do you think…?”

Remember at this stage in getting used to hybrid meetings, people are relatively forgiving and are expecting some problems.

The better at it you are, and the more seamless your meetings, the more impressed and comfortable people will be.

Best of luck

Hybrid Meetings and Training

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