How to hold a great virtual meeting
1SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Jeff Rendel Jeff Rendel, Certified Speaking Professional, and President of Rising Above Enterprises works with credit unions that want elite results in sales, service, and strategy. Each year, he addresses and facilitates … Web: www.risingaboveenterprises.com Details Face-to-face, in-person meetings carry a lot of value – teamwork, networking, and catching up – but, sometimes, virtual meetings are timelier and more convenient, if not downright necessary. Like a live meeting, virtual meetings take just as much preparation – and a little more patience – to ensure success. Here are ten tips to help assure your next virtual meeting (Slack, WebEx, Zoom, etc.) is as productive as having the entire team onsite.Assign a facilitator. If kept unchecked, virtual meetings can get a little out of hand (distance, buffering, over-talking, etc.). Task the facilitator with keeping the meeting on track and managing appropriate involvement (and, respect your request of the facilitator, too).Work from an agenda. Send an agenda to all – well-ahead of time – and work from it. Expect that participants come prepared with comments or questions for dialogue.Come prepared to contribute. This requires all to pre-read, conduct due diligence, and plan to participate. This helps create strong ideas and solutions during the meeting, rather than a lot of “Let me get back to you” remarks.Use a call-in number. Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) is contemporary; but, occasionally Internet audio lacks good quality. A dial-in number is dedicated to audio; but, be mindful of too many speaking at the same time (mobile call-ins tend to cut other lines off).Turn the video feature “On.” It’s a fantastic way to make everyone feel that they are in the same room. Plus, being on camera compels engagement (which is what you need from any meeting).Eliminate distractions. Sign off email, close your web browser, shut your door, and put the cat in another room (seriously; email me if you want to hear the story). Any distraction lessens your attention and diminishes your focus for the meeting.Involve everyone. While not all will equally contribute, hearing from each is vital. As facilitator, go “around the room” several times to make sure everyone can take part.Use the “Raise Hand” feature. In person facilitation is straightforward; one can manage the flow of conversation by being present. When many are part of the discussion, raise your virtual hand so the facilitator knows you have some feedback.Use visuals. While it’s good to see everyone on screen, it’s equally nice to see the highlights of the conversation. Use the notetaking and screen sharing features of your video conferencing platform.Keep meetings to one hour. Attention spans begin to wane, and effectiveness can dip: more reason for a good agenda. If extra time is needed, take a 30-minute break to think about solutions offered and return with a focus on results.Virtual meeting technology allows communication between teams at a distance to be more routine. Success during these meetings asks that we respect time and be present. Commitment to both helps organizations and professionals meet and move forward, regardless of location.