Carrying out meetings virtually with the members of a whole working team sitting at multiple Earth locations is indeed the reality of today’s world. The famous work from a home culture that is both the need and the hour’s call demands for meetings to be carried out remotely and virtually. Under such circumstances, the biggest question of the day is how to conduct remote meetings effectively. There are multiple reasons why the remote virtual meeting could fail to turn out to be as productive and effective as a face-to-face physical meeting. But there are also various strategies that, when implemented, can turn remote sessions into the most effective ever.
Strategies to Make Remote Meetings Effective
So, without wasting any further time, let us have a look at those strategies:-
Make Appropriate Use of Video Technology
Various platforms in today’s digital world enable the participants of a meeting to communicate through videos. Remote sessions often fail to be effective because there is no personal involvement in them. People can’t see their faces, follow the expressions or draw ideas from gestures. But with the proper use of video technology, the members of the meeting can see each other, which closely resemble the face to face meetings. Video Conferencing is one of the best methods for conducting a remote, virtual meeting. One can use platforms like Google Meet, Google Hangouts, Zoom and Skype.
Use the Screenshare Option
Remember how we used to display the presentation on a giant screen during a physical meeting and the employees used to have a fair idea of the picture? With the screen share option, the convener of the meeting or conference can share his or her screen with the meeting participants. In this way, everybody can visually witness whatever they listen to. As you change the slides or the pointer, they can follow instructions and understand the ideas. This is one of the closest resemblances to physical meetings. The screen share option is available on all video meeting platforms, like Zoom, Google Meet, Skype etc.
No Participant Should be allowed to Mute Themselves
There are plenty of real-life instances where employees carry out other chores while playing the meeting in the background. This is a highly damaging practice and is detrimental for both the employee and the company. One of the primary rules for carrying out a successful and productive remote meeting is to make unmuting mandatory for all the participants. This step enhances all employees’ participation and bars the tendency to multitask while paying less importance to the ongoing meeting. So everybody practically has their full attention towards the meeting.
When it is a remote meeting there is a tendency to have a high number of people in the meeting. The golden rule is to conduct with the minimum number of employees. Too many participants can cause various technical glitches in the discussion. Some may not be able to hear, and some will have a poor internet connection, whereas many will have a distracting background. So, the lesser the participant’s strength, the lesser the distraction. To cope with the scenario, one can conduct meetings frequently but limit the participants’ population for each meeting. With lesser people, it is easier to convey thoughts, get feedback and ensure the wholesome participation of the squad. In this way, the meetings become more sorted and engaging.
Setting the Correct Time and Schedule for the Meeting
Simply because someone is at home, you cannot expect them to be available 24*7 to attend the remote meetings. That is the greatest myth ever. For improving the overall effectiveness of a remote meeting, try to schedule the meetings in advance unless it is an emergency need. Let the participants have all the information regarding the meeting schedule well in advance that makes planning easier for all the participants. While planning the time, one must take care of the time zones because people in the meeting may be from various parts of the world.
Fix the Agendas and Assign Time for Each
Remote meetings often turn out to be the most distorted ones due to the lack of proper planning. To prevent your remote meetings from being vandalised just due to the lack of proper sketching, one must make arrangements quite in advance. Remember that it is only the medium of meeting that has changed; the work is still the same. Try to note down all the agendas at least three days before the meeting and make sure to send a copy of the same to all the participants. People should not drop into the panel out of anywhere. Everyone should know what they are in the meeting for. If there are multiple agendas in the bucket list, it is essential to allocate time for each. This same rule will apply if there are multiple speakers.
Create a Proper Environment
Simply because everyone is at their home, one cannot just randomly start talking in a meeting. The host should start the meeting with a small conversation with the whole team. This will yield two benefits – first, it will give some time to the participants to sink into the atmosphere of the meeting, which will improve the performance. Second, this small introductory conversation will make people feel connected; it is an appreciation of their presence and makes every participant feel important and wanted in the meeting. Remember that there is nothing more profound than the participants’ psychological status that can determine the effectiveness of a forum.
The whole concept of team collaboration is subjected to the greatest ever dynamism. Outsourcing and consulting are the two arenas where remote meetings are an integral part of project development. Clients and team members need to manage their duties based on telecommunication, and virtual teamwork efficiently. Virtual remote meetings often turn out to be just passing directions by the boss and fail to involve the employee’s opinions. With the strategies mentioned above, one can effectively manage remote meetings. With a decent internet connection and willpower, you are all set to succeed.