Virtual Meetings: Guidelines To Follow

For any virtual team, reducing virtual Meeting fatigue is critical to success. Virtual Meetings are a powerful way of getting people together in real-time for face-to-face communication and business discussion. A virtual Meeting can be used for many things, such as:

  • Finding out what everyone is working on
  • Setting up a short term project
  • Having employees report for duty
  • Discussing your company goals
  • Teaching people in a specific area
  • Demonstrating something interesting
  • Hosting an impromptu discussion
  • Getting a new idea across to a colleague or team
  • Presenting a new or improved product

As you can see, there are many ways that a virtual meeting can be beneficial to your virtual business meetings and staff members. But, it’s important to know when and how to use these meetings to best benefit your company.

Here are some virtual Meeting fatigue tips to help you enjoy more virtual sessions and more productive team discussions:

* Be Prepared.

When you know what time you’ll be available to participate in the virtual meeting, take advantage of it! There is nothing more frustrating than scheduling your virtual Meeting and being two hours behind the schedule. By being prepared and available at the agreed-upon time, your virtual Meeting will run smoothly and you’ll avoid the frustration of trying to deal with people who can’t commit or don’t show up.

* Stick to the Schedule.

Scheduling a virtual meeting is a commitment. Make it a commitment that includes both your availability and expected activity time. Don’t make virtual meetings a “scheduling nightmare” by making them fill up rapidly. By setting meeting times and minutes, you will ensure maximum participation.

* Keep the Venue Closed.

Some virtual Meetings are webinars, which means you cannot physically go to the venue of the virtual Meeting. If you need to be somewhere during the virtual Meeting, find out if there is an alternative solution (i.e., a conference call). You may also want to find out if the venue can accommodate all of your participants at once.

* Be Specific.

Choose specific topics or times for your virtual meetings. Give attendees the information they need to be ready for your virtual meeting. Give them a checklist of what they need to bring and suggest the best times to meet. By being specific, you are less likely to waste time with unproductive exchanges.

* Minimize Talk.

The less you say, the more your virtual meeting will be like a real one. A long virtual meeting that involves many different topics can quickly become disorganized, so keep the conversation to a minimum. Also, make sure there is enough time for questions and answers, so people don’t feel hemmed in.

* Stick to the Schedule.

If your virtual meeting does take place, stick to your schedule. Nothing motivates participants more than being on the clock but not doing anything at all. Taking control of the agenda helps participants feel more in charge and less like they are being “promoted,” which will help smooth the way toward better communications.

* Stay Open.

Scheduling virtual meetings is often a great way to get some new ideas. However, it’s also a good time to get out of the office and into the real world. By remaining open and present, your virtual meeting can lead participants to new discussions, which can result in business.

* Watch What You Say.

If your virtual meeting goes well, keep the tone light and conversational. Don’t get emotional or try to persuade your participants. This will send the wrong message to your audience and may alienate them. Instead, be clear and concise.

As you can see, there are some things to remember when holding virtual meetings. They aren’t the same as having a face-to-face meeting, in that the goal isn’t to solve problems or close deals. But virtual meetings can be an excellent tool if done right. Knowing how to set the right virtual meeting will make all the difference. And that’s a good thing, as you never know where this technology might take you.