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Technical problems in your online meeting: 3 steps towards the solution

Nothing more annoying than running into technical problems during your online meeting. But unfortunately we all have to deal with this (regularly). Whether it's problems with sound, image, connection or functions that do not work, it is very unpleasant if this interrupts your meeting. That's why it's important to know how to fix these problems. In this blog, we will teach you how to handle this in 3 steps!  

Step 1: What is the problem?
First, it is important to identify the problem. After all, without a problem, there is no solution either. There are a number of scenarios that can arise: 

  • Problems with the arrangements made 
  • Problems with the functionalities of the tool 
  • Problems with audio 
  • Problems with the camera 
  • Internet connection problems

Problems with the arrangements made
Surely the most common problems are those arising from the arrangements made. For example, participants who did not receive a link, joined the session too late or were not properly prepared. Although these problems are very common, they are actually the easiest to solve. 

Problems with the functionalities of the tool
Another common problem is a problem with the video calling tool you are using, such as Cisco Webex, Microsoft Teams or Zoom. Consider, for example, a button that doesn't work or restrictions related to security settings.  

Problems with audio
It still happens regularly that the sound within an online meeting does not work. This may be because a speaker is not working, the microphone of a participant has stopped working or a headset is connected (incorrectly). 

Problems with the camera
Since you are already communicating with each other remotely it is nice to at least be able to see each other! If the video connection is not working then this can cause communication to be more difficult. 

Internet connection problems
There's nothing more annoying than someone who can't be heard properly due to faltering audio or a camera image that keeps freezing or crashing. These are usually consequences of a poor internet connection. Most video calling tools themselves have a way to regulate this so that the quality remains as good as possible, but still this does not guarantee it. 

Step 2: Who is experiencing the problem? 

Now that you know what the problem is, it's time for the next step: who is experiencing the problem? This can help you figure out where the problem is coming from. Is everyone experiencing the problem? Then the problem will not be with one person, but rather in the program. But if, for example, only one participant reports not hearing anything, then that person will need to check if his or her sound is working properly.  

Step 3: Work toward the solution 

Finally, the most important step: working toward the solution. After you've figured out what the problem is and who is experiencing it, you can start looking for a solution. The important thing here is to keep a few things in mind.  

  1. Can it be solved quickly? Then you can do this during the online meeting, but try to make sure that the other participants are as unaffected by it as possible. So don't spend five minutes on one participant's problem, but it's fine to briefly explain where to find an important button. Is it not a quick fix? Then schedule a moment after the session to still do this, so that next time it will go without any trouble. 
  2. How important is it to resolve? Is it a meeting in which little interaction is expected of the participants?aThen there is no need to spend time solving that one participant's audio problem, but you can ask them to give input via the chat feature or whiteboard for this time. 
  3. Schedule a moment prior to the (first) session to test if everything is working properly. That way you avoid spending time during the meeting on technical inconveniences and you can just start at the appointed time. 
  4. Provide someone who can support for technical problems. This way, the host/presenter can always continue and there is still someone who can help when something does not go as planned. 

Tips for the most common problems 

These steps can be a great help in identifying the problem and gives you direction for finding a solution. There is unfortunately no space in this article to discuss all possible problems and solutions, but below you will find some useful tips that will help in many cases: 

Audio Problems
Is the sound not working properly? Then first of all, try whether it is turned on and set loud enough. Is this the case? Then always check whether the sound via a headset works or disconnect it to see if this solves the problem. 

Camera problems
Is the camera not working or do you not see anything? Then first check if the camera is not turned on in another program. Webcams can usually only be used in one program at a time. It is also possible that the camera is turned off because the computer's privacy settings. Finally, an external camera can still help. 

Internet problems
Problems with the Internet connection are the most common problems, but they are often also the easiest to solve or improve. A fixed cable connection provides the strongest and most stable connection, but moving closer to the router or turning off other devices that consume (a lot of) internet can also help.  

Always give clear instructions and always ask carefully when a problem arises. Still, despite the above steps and tips, are you really not getting anywhere? Then consult technical support within your organization or contact the administrator of the tool in which the problem occurs directly. Good luck!