While the basics of etiquette still apply, running virtual meetings is a different ball game as compared to face-to-face sit-downs. With working remotely becoming the new norm, knowing how to tackle virtual meetings is the key to good work communication.
Here are some ways that can help you make the most of remote meetings.
Choose the right platform
Quick check-in and an elaborate brainstorm require separate technologies and with the availability of so many applications at our fingertips, we should take in the time to review several platforms before deciding the perfect one. Consider the fact that while video calling may be a great way to connect and understand non-verbal cues, many feel self-conscious using it, which may urge them to drawback instead of participating.
Establish an agenda
Virtual meetings can be a minetrap for more and more discussions. Many rush to cover all the points while on the call losing focus and sight of the agenda. Design your meetings with an agenda that brings objectives to life. Stimulate discussion with participation activities such as questions, polls, etc.
Set ground rules
Let the attendees of the meeting know the ground rules beforehand to establish a certain decorum. For instance, simple steps like asking the members to join the meeting five minutes before it starts, asking them to mute their lines unless it’s their chance to speak, or even stating names before speaking can help create a focus in the meeting, by eliminating unwanted distractions.
A virtual session can be way more dynamic with the use of the tools available with the technology. Options like polling, instant messaging, a virtual whiteboard to brainstorm ideas or even sharing files in real-time not only act as an interactive tool of communication but also help add variety and interest to the meeting.
Face-to-face meetings make it easy to pick up visual as well as voice cues but when done virtually, the same cues can be lost. Take into consideration the virtual reality before communicating with the participant. Provide stronger cues by using words as prompts. For example, imagine you’re hosting a virtual company town hall and ask everyone to introduce themselves. This will definitely be heard with silence. But what you can do instead of guide the discussion by subtly inviting three participants that can start the conversation, pushing the others to follow along.
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