As working remotely becomes popular, video chat and instant messaging apps are becoming in-demand. That’s because it allows you to send messages and hold meetings without having to talk in person.
But virtual meetings have their drawbacks, too.
Because of the lack of in-person interaction, it becomes harder to build a communal atmosphere. And if you are working from home, you can be distracted and tune out of the virtual meeting.
According to a study, 91% say they daydreamed, while 39% fell asleep.
Hence, you should do something to make your virtual meetings engaging. Here are seven tips to make it happen:
Prepare Before the Meeting
Before you start, you need to know the essentials- connection, collaboration, and feedback. If you combine these, you and your team can have the best virtual experience possible.
The participants in this meeting can also feel a lot more engaged and productive. Fortunately, there’s plenty of tools out there that you can use to support you with these essentials.
After you know which tools you’ll be using, the next thing you need to do is to develop a plan that will cover different topics that will be discussed. Doing so prevents you from being sidetracked so that you can get the most out of your virtual meetings.
Get Everyone Involved
Chances are, some team members will be more engaged and talkative than others. So, if there are members of your team that are more introverted, then it’s a lot harder for them to speak up.
Hence, you have to ensure that everyone in your team becomes more engaged. You can do this by giving everyone equal opportunities to contribute to your virtual meetings.
For one, assign who will do the ice breaker before the meeting. Another option is to do a scrum meeting so anyone can have a chance to speak.
Prepare an Icebreaker
If you manage a remote team, it is likely that what you know about your colleague will not go beyond work. Hence, having an icebreaker can be an excellent way to know your team better.
You must be creative and ensure that your icebreaker allows you to foster connection. Moreover, an icebreaker is meant to build a fun, light-hearted atmosphere for your team.
Just make sure that your icebreakers are universally relatable. Focus on fun facts, favorite food, city of origin, and so on.
Make an Interactive Presentation
Talking to your attendees for an hour is almost guaranteed to make anyone fall asleep. Encourage active participation by hosting Q&A sessions in the middle of the meeting.
Research shows that the interest of your audience significantly improves if you include graphics and visuals along with it. So, make sure that you have those graphs, charts, and images.
Also, try to keep your virtual meetings short and sweet. As a good rule of thumb, try to keep it anywhere around 30-60 minutes.
If it’s going on for more than an hour, it’s either you’ve gone too far or you need to schedule breaks in between.
Gamify Your Virtual Meeting
Incorporating various elements from games are also the key things that will make your online meeting from good to impressive.
The gaming industry more likely knows a thing or two about engagement. So trying to weave gaming components in the meeting allows you to have a more interactive and memorable presentation.
You can also use actual prices so that attendees will give them a more competitive edge and even incorporate that element of surprise.
Allow People to Take Ownership
You can assign particular tasks, like taking notes, to your team members during the virtual meeting.
Allowing your people to take ownership will compel them to get engaged. Because the least they could do is listen intently and take note of what transpired during the meeting.
Feedback plays an essential role in enhancing your online meetings.
You can use that opportunity to ask attendees what works for them and what not during the meeting. You can also ask what they would like to see or do in the next meeting or what can be done better.
Doing so ensures that your virtual meeting improves. Otherwise, you will be unable to engage your participants.
Moreover, soliciting feedback empowers your team to speak their mind when needed. And this is one way to foster leadership among your colleagues and employees.
Over to You
While virtual meetings are convenient, maintaining your team’s interest can be tricky. Hence, you need to be creative on how you can keep your virtual meetings engaging. And you can start with the tips listed above.
Otherwise, the meeting will be futile, and things can fall through the cracks. This can hurt your business in one way or another.
So make sure you integrate these tips. But more importantly, have fun and keep the energy high.
About the Author:
Raymond Chiu is the Director of Operations for Maid Sailors Hoboken Cleaning Service. Maid Sailors takes pride in providing outstanding residential and commercial cleaning services at affordable prices.