Well-run meetings can revolutionize the way a business runs its operations. Regular discussions strengthen workplace culture, encourage a healthy flow of ideas, and build team unity.
But despite those advantages, many senior managers believe that group discussions prevent them from completing their tasks on time. This usually happens when meetings fail to meet their set objectives.
When the meeting is hosted without a clear purpose, employees lose interest in the conversations. In fact, statistics show that 49% of employees are involved in unrelated work during meetings. This number tends to be higher in the remote work models.
Unlike traditional meetings, virtual group calls invite more distractions. In addition to experiencing technical difficulties, employees also struggle to focus on the meeting content, especially when the presentation lacks a proper flow and structure.
This makes it crucial to learn the art of delivering an effective virtual meeting that keeps the team engaged, interested, and attentive. This guide discusses five ways to help you get the most out of your virtual meetings.
5 Ways To Make The Most Out Of Your Virtual Meetings
Hosting virtual meetings presents a myriad of problems. You need to plan for technical difficulties, create an agenda, work around interruptions, and ensure that the meeting achieves its objectives.
For this reason, most managers use a brainstorming tool to map out their ideas before the session. Brainstorming tools enable managers and teams to share ideas and create conversation structures that help them stay on course during the discussion. Also, consider all ideas presented to ensure that the meeting surpasses its productivity threshold.
1. Plan The Meeting Objectives
Before hosting any meeting, you need to decide the purpose of the discussion. Research shows that companies lose approximately $399 billion in needless meetings. Therefore, it is crucial to highlight factors that you need to discuss with the team and find ways to use the discussion to boost productivity.
In addition to laying down the meeting objectives, you also need to plan the discussion and let everyone know how long the meeting is supposed to last. This can help everyone stay on track without losing precious working hours.
2. Pick The Right Time
The meeting time also plays an integral role in the attendee’s interest level. For instance, if the meeting is hosted early morning, the participants would be fresh and, therefore, more receptive to the content being discussed. Similarly, if the meeting is held much later in the day, the participants may be worn out by their daily tasks.
You can decide the ideal time by asking the members to suggest a time for the session. You may also consider their time zones and work schedules to determine the meeting time and duration yourself.
3. Record The Meeting
A significant drawback of hosting virtual meetings is the uncertainty in attendance. Often, technical difficulties can hold the employees back from participating enthusiastically during the discussions.
For this reason, recording the discussion is quite helpful. Virtual meeting tools provide you with the option to record and save the conversations. This way, if a member missed a specific point, they can revisit the saved file and clear their queries.
4. Leave Room For Team Interaction
The communication barrier in virtual meetings is another problem that most managers struggle with. As the participants are not in the same room, there are several cases where individuals talk over each other, ultimately leading to confusion.
Taking that into account, you can integrate team interaction into your meeting plan. For instance, naming a member to speak about a particular point can help you keep the conversation flowing without confusion or chaos.
5. Use A Mind Map To Record Ideas
Using a mind map to record ideas throughout the meeting can help you create a concise discussion summary. In addition, a collaborative tool can enhance communication and engagement as users share ideas in real-time. This can save everyone the burden of jotting down notes during the discussion.
Moreover, once these notes are created, you can send them to the relevant members of the team so that they can reflect and use them during work.
Virtual meetings can be productive. But you can get the most out of your sessions by being proficient in planning, structuring, and scheduling the meeting. You can further take advantage of technical advancements, such as brainstorming tools, meeting recorders, and mind map creation tools to make remote meetings worthwhile.