Inclusive Meetings

Whether it's in a technical session at a conference or a committee meeting, a virtual meeting or in-person, we want all attendees to feel welcome and valued, and we know you do, too. Here are some things to keep in mind as a host or a participant. Most apply to all gatherings, but some are unique to virtual meetings.

Do. . .

  • Demonstrate respect and consideration for all people and don’t dominate the discussion.
  • Listen well to others. Make room for a diversity of voices and welcome all participants. In virtual meetings, respect the needs and choices of all participants to join the session in by video and audio, audio alone, or other means.
  • Facilitators should invite, but never pressure, all participants to offer contributions to the conversation, and in wrapping up every discussion, extend a final invitation to offer comment.
  • Be collaborative. Be mindful not to exert dominance over others. Especially if you are the host or moderator, consider the effect of relationship, position, experience, power differentials, and ease of communicating by video or audio.
  • Demonstrate that differing perspectives are valued—critique ideas, not people.
  • Demonstrate welcome for a diversity of individuals and their identities. Pay attention to whether individuals of many identities and roles are included on panels, leading sessions, being called on when they raise their hands or use the chat function, and having their points considered.
  • In a virtual meeting, act to mitigate any invasions of personal privacy should a participant unknowingly present in an environment in which privacy would be assumed (a breastfeeding room, a bathroom). Quickly and with discretion inform a meeting leader, who may be able to intervene.
  • Report conduct concerns to the meeting host, leader, or staff, so that concerns can be addressed responsibly and timely. Respect and maintain confidentiality.
  • Answer questions about conduct concerns in a forthright and complete manner (e.g., when registering or during a review of concerns).
  • Comply promptly, should you be asked to cease a behavior.
  • Comply with our policy on recording technical sessions and meetings: 
    • Electronic recording of technical committee meetings will not be allowed except by ASABE staff or committee leadership for the exclusive use in drafting meeting minutes. The recordings will be limited to audio only and will be deleted after the meeting minutes are drafted. Consent from all participants must be secured before recording begins. Even if one participant objects, no recording will be made.
    • Photographs will be allowed to be taken of presenters and attendees of technical committee by ASABE staff or if prearranged by a requesting individual.
    • Photographs of projected/presented information during technical meetings will not be allowed.

Avoid . . .

  • Intentionally talking over or interrupt others.
  • Favoring those participating by video/audio over audio or other means.
  • Engaging in biased, demeaning, intimidating, coercive, or harassing/hostile conduct or commentary, whether seriously or in jest—this is the opposite of respectful and welcoming conduct.
  • Engaging in personal attacks.
  • Commenting on personal appearance or assumed or known reasons why a person chooses to participate via video/audio, audio, or other means—seriously or in jest.
  • Retaliating against or disadvantage anyone for reporting a conduct concern or assisting in its resolution. Don't make bad faith accusations.