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Essential Facilitation Tools for Extraordinary Workshops: Virtual Edition

In an era where remote work and virtual gatherings have become the norm, the tools you choose can make or break the experience. These are the top-notch tools that I've found invaluable in making my virtual events engaging, productive, and memorable.


ElevATE your suite of virtual facilitation tools

These are the facilitation tools that have become the backbone of my virtual events, consistently elevating the quality and impact of my workshops.

In my opinion, Butter is hands-down the standout platform in the virtual facilitation toolkit. After my very first workshop in Butter, my client remarked "I massively enjoyed the interactive element and would like to learn how we make this a fixture in the org." It's that good. With Butter, the virtual event experience becomes an interactive and fun-filled journey, replicating the atmosphere of an in-person gathering seamlessly. Beyond its smooth (pun intended), user-friendly interface and engaging features, what truly sets Butter apart is its vibrant facilitator and creator community. This community connects like-minded individuals and fellow facilitators, sharing insights, ideas, and best practices. The platform truly is a treat for facilitators and attendees alike.

Bonus: Butter creates gifs of your sessions that make for excellent social content to share the fabulous experience you led.

Image of the Butter platform with Miro integration
Butter 🤝 Miro

Miro's collaborative workspace capabilities empower participants to brainstorm, visualize ideas, and work together seamlessly (and it integrates directly into Butter!) Whether you're conducting workshops, brainstorming sessions, or simply need a digital whiteboard to share ideas, Miro's flexibility makes it an indispensable asset for virtual facilitation.

Canva bridges the design gap for facilitators, making it easy for those like me with minimal design experience to create visually appealing materials to promote their offerings. Whether you need promotional graphics or workshop handouts, Canva's intuitive interface and vast library of templates empower you to craft eye-catching content that enhances your virtual events. For times when I need just a little more help, I turn to local graphic designers in my network. It's always a pleasure working with other small business owners.

ChatGPT offers an innovative twist to virtual facilitation by serving as your virtual co-worker. I lean on ChatGPT when I'm missing traditional in-office engagement, as a solo facilitator. It's nice to have a 'colleague' to bounce ideas with, brainstorm, and even create blog headlines.😉 Beyond ideation, AI in general is a useful tool in summarizing lengthy information, creating a list of action items from meeting notes, and creating outlines from which you create content.

A white human-like robot holding a laptop
How I imagine my ChatGPT coworker

This is a two-for. Combine the forces of Calendly AND CalendarBridge to simplify your scheduling process. Calendly has long been the industry standard for offering potential clients or collaborators the convenience of finding suitable meeting times, and it lives up to that reputation. I combine Calendly with CalendarBridge for real-time, effortless syncing across my multiple calendars. The time-saving wonders of these tools ensure that scheduling is no longer an anxiety-inducing task, enabling you to focus on the substance of your work.

In the digital age, sometimes the best facilitation tools are offline. Don't underestimate the power of pen & paper, a whiteboard, or a stack of post-it notes. These analog tools offer a tangible space to organize your thoughts, plan workshops, and ensure that your ideas are translated effectively into the virtual realm. I 'go analog' for a refreshing change of pace in our tech-centric world. Some days I'm in an hour-long conversation with ChatGPT and some days I'm spread across my bedroom floor with six colors of post-its and sharpies. It's about balance.

Bonus: Did you know you can get custom post-its?? What an amazing gift to leave with clients after a workshop!

A desktop covered in papers, colored markers, a phone, and a computer


CurATE your personal collection

In the evolving landscape of virtual facilitation, the right tools can transform your events from ordinary to extraordinary. But 'right' can be subjective. The best tools are the ones you will use - because they make you feel confident, efficient, engaging, and productive.

Embrace the power of these tools, experiment, and find your perfect blend - because in the realm of virtual facilitation, it's not just about hosting events; it's about crafting remarkable experiences that linger in the minds of your audience long after the virtual room has cleared.

What did I miss? Leave me a comment with your go-to tools for taking your virtual facilitation to the next level.


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