With the proliferation of COVID-19 pandemic last year, we have shaped our personal and professional lives around the new normal – that is; working from home, reduced human interaction, social distancing and switching most of the things virtually.
Organizations are also trying to embrace the concept of virtual meetings and events to stay at the top of their game. Traditional face-to-face meetings are different while; working, communicating and collaborating remotely can definitely be a bit of head scratcher.
Lee E. Miller, influencing trainer and author of UP: Influence, Power and the U Perspective: The Art of Getting What You Want, stated, “The biggest mistake people make is assuming that influencing when you are meeting face to face is the same as influencing when you are interacting virtually. It’s not.
The rules are different because people respond differently when they are interacting virtually.”
Here in this article we will share some proven tips to help you conduct productive virtual meetings.
1. Share something positive at the start of the meeting
Working with an in-person team does not necessarily require a lot of efforts to build social connection and rapport among the participants.
The traditional workflow allows employees develop informal relationships that boost their creativity at the workplace. According to a study presented in Harvard Business Review; during a brainstorming session, employees who shared embarrassing or funny stories with their team, tend to generate 26% innovative ideas than the ones who did not.
Being a facilitator or manager, you can begin your next virtual meeting with something positive; for example a “virtual water cooler” (according to a research conducted by Michael J.Brzozowski, “water cooler attributes to change the perception of employees about their workplace and they tend to feel more associated to the group and the company.”, any story-telling or some ice breaking activities.
Create a congenial virtual environment by making them share their stories and communicating with each other.
2. Avoid distractions & engage the whole team
One of the pros of virtual meetings is that you can conduct them anywhere and that’s kind of its disadvantage too! Try to minimize any technological or environmental glitches and interruptions.
One approach to help members focus entirely on the meeting is to request that everybody turn off notifications (so email blips don’t keep springing up), set their phones aside, and limit anything that disconnect the whole team .
In addition to that, pay attention to your fellow colleagues. See if they are attuned to the discussion going on or not. Balance out the response of participants who seem to dominate the meeting and try to involve the others as well.
Note: Video calls serve as a great tool for effective virtual meetings. Since teammates are not co-located, setting up video calls tends to humanize remote meetings.
3. Make sure everyone is mentally present
Performing multiple tasks was once considered as an approach to complete numerous things immediately, yet it’s presently perceived as an approach to do numerous things inadequately.
As science shows us, notwithstanding the brain’s momentous complexity, there’s a bottleneck in data preparing when it attempts to perform two particular errands at the same time.
In addition to the fact that multitasking is terrible for the brain; it’s awful for the team too. Managers should ban performing multiple tasks at the same time and ask employees to wait once the meeting is ended as it’s significant for everybody to be mentally present.
Here are two different ways to ensure the restriction on performing various tasks is followed:
• Use video: It can basically kill performing multiple tasks, on the grounds that your fellows can see you.
• Set the norm of giving everyone a job. Let individuals share their musings. This will enhance interaction as well as make participants active doers instead of passive listeners.
4. Decide & communicate ground rules
Establishing the ground rules at the start of the meeting can help you have a soothing and productive virtual meeting experience. Decide beforehand about the rules and general practices.
For example, you can ask attendees to log in earlier than the meeting time and check their audio and video connections to avoid any fidgets. You can also ask attendees to mute their speakers and unmute only at the time of communicating.
5. Schedule regular follow-ups
In order to run an effective meeting online, all employees must walk out with an objective in mind. This can be achieved and updated with continuous follow-ups. Carry out regular follow-ups by sending emails with any supporting archives, notes, or feedback surveys.
This is additionally a decent chance to get member input on the meeting through a short survey (e.g., how was the session? How would you like to improve future meetings? Etc…)
This post was written by:
Bianca is a content creator & a passionate blogger. She is a professional tech blogger & an avid reader by soul. She loves to explore topics related to news / technology, particularly content transfer. In her free time, she enjoys penning down her thoughts with a cup of coffee. Learn more https://www.contactscleanup.com/