Yawned again today after my 4th virtual meeting in quick succession. I don't understand why hosts of online video link meetings treat them so differently to actual face to face meetings?
You would smile in meetings, you would make eye contact, you wouldn't pick your nose if actually present so why when online?
If you are a host or participant of online meetings then here are some of my top tips reminders to help ensure your virtual meeting is more engaging!
Start on time: people make the effort to arrive in person on time, online is no different.
Welcome everyone: if you cannot see who is online ask them to introduce themselves, make a note of their names so you can ensure to include everyone in any discussion.
Make it fun: consider an ice-breaker, could just be to share a fun fact, something that has gone well or be even more adventurous and run a competition or quiz - these work well in virtual team meetings.
Look ready: working from home often means everyday is dress down Friday but please make sure you look like you want to be on the call and you care... I have seen PJ's, vest tops and even hair still wrapped in a towel - this is taking it a little too far.
Agenda & outcomes: no point in having a meeting if there is no purpose. Even an informal team meeting has a purpose so will have an outcome, share those in advance so people are prepared. Ensure somebody takes notes and any call to actions are captured.
Tech test: Either test before or extend the meeting time to allow for tech test. Can you hear and be heard, as the host do you know how to share any presentations and most of all, please, I beg you make sure your camera view is suitable, whole face in shot, what can be seen behind you and is there a dazing glare from the window you sit next too?
Final one.... #bekind: Help out your participants, get a tech login guide over to them beforehand and remember at this time,COVID-19 crazy time, a lot of people working from home will have makeshift set-ups; dialling in from phones, iPads and PCs whilst sat in kitchens, bedrooms and hallways. New junior co-workers bursting in, traffic or noisy neighbours... Help them out and check that they have what they need and can continue to still look and feel professional!