Region 3 ExCom e-Conference Meeting 29 January 2000 Evaluation Summary

Number of Responses: 16

Summary of Responses:

Your role in this meeting: Voting Members - 10...  Non-Voting - 6

When did you arrive for meeting ( time, zone): 9:00 to 10:30 EST

Which Sessions did you attend ?  Both - 16

Were the stated meeting objectives met? Yes - 16

Were your personal objectives met? Yes - 15... No/Somewhat - 1

If No (on either question), please explain:

The true answer is "somewhat". 

Did you find the instructions clear and easy to follow? Yes - 16

How may the instructions be improved?

Instructions very good.
If everyone would read and ask questions about the guidelines
I felt that they were fairly complete. I am not particularly a computer person, but was able to download software from the web site, install it and make it work with minimal fuss.
Needed help on turning off flood control.
Could not find password to access some of the supporting items on the agenda from the web, e.g. the R3 budget.That limited my ability to refer to those items during the meeting.

Were the meeting procedures followed? Yes - 15  No -1

How could the procedures be improved?
(briefly describe areas for improvement ie meeting flow, voting, discussion...)

Members typing Q/C/Ans quicker.  This should come with time.
They will be improved through usage and feedback of the results achieved in the meeting.
Clone Dave Green
For a few moments I had hope that we would be finished well before 4:00. Suggest next time that we don't go over routine reports unless someone specifically wants to comment.
Some of the members still did not understand the proper procedures to use.
Get all participants to read and follow the guidelines.
Simply, practice makes perfect!  Once typing q/c as a hand-raise becomes habit for all of us, we will see fewer and fewer "outbursts!"  Overall, I must take my hats off to Dave Green for his talents in keeping all procedures flowing smoothly, and for helping us all do our jobs better during this meeting!


Did you attend the Meeting on 18 January 2000? Yes - 15  No -1

Was the Preparation for the meeting adequate? Yes - 15   No - 1

How could the Preparation be improved?

I think that meeting achieved its purpose.
Not all who wished to participate could join the main chat group.  This situation was corrected in time for the 1/29 meeting.
All Chairs must submit reports ahead of the meeting. All Chairs must read the reports submitted and formulate questions / comments before the meeting.
Preparation level was satisfactory for me.
Thanks to John Twitchell, I was able to sign into the mtg.  Due to the firewall at my office I can not access the server.  Also, I did notice several people seemed to be dropped off the mtg and have to rejoin - can this be corrected?   Is there in internet provider (FREE) that we could use?
Response: Almost all of the people "dropping off" were AOL customers. The guidelines reference a shareware package call Stay Connected which helps alleviate the problem for those that can use it.

All members could submit materials by the deadline date.

Please rate the effectiveness of this e-conference as compared to face to face Executive Committee Meetings :
(choose from more, about the same, less, and don't know -- feel free to answer don't know if you are not sure of a particular category)

Level of Discussion More - 2  Same - 6  Less - 8
Committee Chair Preparation More - 8  Same - 8   Less -
Security of Executive Session More - 0  Same - 9   Less - 2  N/A - 5
Overall Accomplishment More - 1  Same - 11 Less - 4
As Physically Demanding
(Were you as tired?)
More - 0   Same- 1    Less - 15

Do you miss traveling to the meeting?  Somewhat - 7   Yes - 3  No - 1
                                                                   Heck No - 5

Was the Help Desk necessary?  Yes - 5     No - 11

Did you refer to the on-line materials during the meeting? Yes -10  No - 6

Did you attend a Committee Meeting prior to or during the ExCom Meeting?(choose all that apply)
 Committee Meeting Prior to ExCom 7
 Committee Meeting During ExCom 7
 Side Bar Discussion   14

General comments about the effectiveness of e-conferencing:

I think this first e-conference went very well.  Mainly due to Sec. Dave Green keeping us on course and making sure all q/c were heard. The advance agendas were good as were the instructions.\nIt helped to have participated in a smaller SPC e-conf first along with the training session on 1/18.
I consider e-conferencing to be an efficient and effective way to get business done.  I think that gathering everyone together periodically is important also.  Much can and does get accomplished outside of the formal meetings when participants are gathered together  away from home and office.
In accomplishing the work of the ExCom e-conferencing is a most effective tool. The socialization and personal networking should be face to face.
I am still trying to get software for all my PAOC comm.  Bill, Dave, and Charles worked very hard to make this meeting a success. Travel that weekend would have been difficult because sleet, ice, snow, and freezing rain occurred.
When combined with on-line and real-time collaboration, sync econf will be much more effective.  the need for face to face meetings will never go away, as we all occasionally need that human contact. Once everyone appreciates the potential of the medium and learns to make use of it, we should see productivity soar.
I feel that e-conferencing can be a useful tool. I do not think it can replace all face-to-face meetings, but if the agenda is selected properly, can replace at least one EXCOM meeting a year. It sure beat getting to the airport at 4:30 AM on a Saturday morning, working until 11:30 PM, then not getting home until late Sunday evening!  As long as everyone is well prepared, it will go OK. I am concerned that if a specific agenda item required significant discussion, e-conferencing would not be an effective way to conduct a debate.  I can touch type, but someone who is a hunt an peck typer would be playing catchup.
I think with only about 20 attendees, we could try something more sophisticated like Microsoft Netmeeting (developed here in Lexington, KY by the way!) Even if we didn't use the video, we could at least have audio capabilities. Or, if the bandwidth is not sufficient, we could at least try\nthis on smaller, sub-committees.
This is a very good alternative, however you do loose the interaction from an on site meeting.   Several articles have been written about the effectiveness of Conf Calls, e-conf, video conf., and they have all come to the same conclusion - They are good alternative, but do not replace the face-to-face meeting.\n\nI think we should continue to use this option as a substitute for face-to-face meetings on a limited basis.  I also believe that committee meetings of this nature would work very well, particularly for small committees.  Again, the face-to-face meetings would be more fruitful, but with restrictions on time and money, this is a alternative we can and should utilize.\n\nOne final comment - I believe Dave Green did an OUTSTANDING job of facilitating the meeting.  He kept us on schedule, made comments where needed, and made the entire meeting flow well.
Those who can type have an advantage; others will be less "eloquent" in their comments, for lack of time and patience\nby the group.
Requires much more preparation by all participants.  A LOT is missed by loss of sense of body language of the speakers.  A LOT of opportunities are missed by not having face to face meetings in the "hallways".
I feel it is about as effective as a face to face meeting and it saved a lot of Region 3 funds as well as many hours of travel time plus it did not endanger the lives of our members traveling as a result of the snow and ice storms that covered much of the southeast. 
I feel that in terms of overall cost-effectiveness and convenience, this venue is an effective alternative to the "regular" EXCOM meetings.  HOWEVER, I feel that there is a definite need for face-to-face meetings, since (for starters) they provide a more personal, professional, and a more active "team-like" atmosphere.  On the other hand, from all that I've witnessed, this would be an effective manner in which to hold various committee meetings -- the information and feedback  disbursed during these meetings would be more effectively and  more time-efficiently be communicated than using e-mail or phone calls, etc. for this purpose.  I feel that one EXCOM  meeting per year via e-conf. is reasonable (and the spring meeting is the best time frame of the three during which to do so), with e-conf. used for committee meetings whenever necessary and mutually workable for those involved.   I believe the committee that put together this opportunity has done a wonderful job!
Met the objectives of the meeting. I consider the e-conference a ground breaking (another first for Region 3) meeting and is an acceptable alternative to a face-to-face meeting. Definite improvement over the BBS chat s/w we used in 1995.

If you have any comments, suggestions or questions about the evaluation please send e-mail to

Last Updated WBR 07 February 2000 09:55 EST