Online meetings have become a recurring theme in everyone's lives - especially since the COVID pandemic. Making sure your discussions are engaging and impactful can seem daunting, but there's nothing to fear! With these simple tricks and tips - you'll be rocking online meetings in your sleep!
Share A Clear And Defined Agenda Ahead Of Time.
"Those that fail to plan, plan to fail." It's never been more accurate, especially for successful meetings. Sharing an agenda that outlines discussion topics, speakers, and allotted timeslots with your attendees before the meeting allows your guests to be prepared with insights or questions, maximizing your meeting's productivity.
Are You Pro-Video Or Not?
It might seem trivial, but deciding whether your meeting requires attendees to turn their cameras or not. Since you're not face-to-face, having a video-on policy for your meeting can help ensure everyone is picking up on social queues they may miss without it.
Pro Tip: Video-on policy also means it's harder for people to be distracted.
For example, it can be difficult to build rapport and trust with someone when you're only seeing them on a screen. That's why turning on your video during meetings is so important. It helps people to feel more connected to you and allows them to see your facial expressions and body language. As a result, they're more likely to trust you and be open to your ideas. So if you want to get the most out of your video meetings, make sure you turn on your video. It'll make all the difference in the world.
Greet Everyone At The Start
Whether you're a people person or not, greeting everyone at the start sets the tone for the meeting. Think of it as welcoming your attendees as if they were walking into a physical meeting. This allows everyone to say their "hellos" while feeling their presence is essential, so they'll pay attention and collaborate with you later in the meeting.
Stick To Your Time Limits
Boost productivity by assigning and sticking to the time limits for each agenda item. This dovetails with your agenda and keeps everyone on the same page. If a talking point starts dominating your meeting, capture an action item in your meeting notes to schedule a separate forum for it. Then get back on schedule.
Stop. Multitasking. Seriously, Stop It.
It feels like five more things get added on for every item you check off your to-do list. You want to get ahead. No one will notice if you start writing your witty reply to Karen, but I promise, everyone knows you're not giving your full attention to the meeting. Focus only on your meeting, and everyone else will soon follow suit - maximizing your time to cross more items off your checklist based on your meeting discussion. (P.S. this includes side conversations. Stop it.)
Take and Share Meeting Notes With Action Items.
It's not always the most entertaining, but it is critical to a successful meeting.
Pro Tip: Use your agenda to help structure your meeting notes.
Write any important questions, decisions, or action items in the appropriate section. After your meeting concludes, take a few minutes to organize your notes based on the item, who is responsible for the next steps, and the agreed deadline to meet. Try to send your meeting notes as soon as you can after the meeting to capitalize on everyone's time.
There, that's not so bad, right? I'm sure you're thinking, " Well, I should've known that." It's ok; leading meetings can be intimidating even for seasoned presenters. Just remember to breathe, smile, and use these simple tips. Before you know it, it will become second nature to command a meeting with confidence, and you'll watch your productivity soar.
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