Using webinars and teleseminars to educate others and to promote your services and products is a powerful, cost-effective tool.

Most of you have probably participated in a number of these. And you’re probably using them for your own business endeavors.

As the host or presenter, have you ever started a session, only to be horrifed that you forgot a critical step, like making sure that your recording system was operational? Or, that you forgot to turn off all the  ringers (yes, even on the fax machine!)?

Having overlooked many critical and not-so-critical elements in my illustrious career, I finally decided to create a checklist of items to verify BEFORE starting a webinar or teleseminar. It’s a “pre-flight” checklist, just like a pilot runs through before take-off. And, just like a plastic surgeon (ahh, that would be me!) used before starting a major surgical procedure.

Here’s an example:

Starting 15 minutes BEFORE the start of the event:

  • Door closed
  • Turn all phone ringers OFF:
    • Landline(s)
    • Cell phone(s)
    • Fax machine(s)
    • Pager

At least 5 minutes BEFORE the event start time:

  • Disable call-waiting, then dial into conference call line.
  • Check recording settings in webinar system (I use www.GoToWebinar)
  • Check recording settings in screen capture softwared (I use Camtasia)
  • Check recording settings in audio editing software (I use Sony Sound Forge)
  • Turn on primary recording system(s)
  • Turn on backup recording system (record without a backup system at your own peril!)

Almost without fail, every time I’ve gotten lazy and neglected to follow this checklist, which is printed and hangs near my phone in a plastic sheet protector, I’ve lived to regret it.

Well, at least no planes crashed and no patients died on the OR table!