Online tools have been standardized for some time in companies. Working remotely and having online meetings is part of most organizations’ professional routines, especially those closest to the digital sector.
However, managing and coordinating teams remotely can be challenging. And companies face the challenge of implementing mechanisms and systems to maintain fluid and efficient communication between teams. As with everything, the internet has advantages and disadvantages.
Video calls offer a significant advantage in promoting teleworking and work flexibility as part of the usual work routine. However, sometimes the actual result of online company meetings could be more cohesive and productive.
Platforms like Zoom, Google Meet, or Teams allow us to contact one or more users through audio and video, share documents with them or even share what we see on our screen. But are we using this resource well? Are we taking advantage of online meetings?
The answer, in most cases, is harmful. But it is normal. We have yet to learn how we should communicate in an online meeting. They have yet to explain how we should prepare for online discussions or how to deal with them. This article brings together essential tips for organizing virtual meetings with teams or clients to make them more valuable and beneficial.
Productive And Effective Online Meetings: How To Hold Work Videoconferences
Pre-scheduling of online meetings
It is still widespread when starting a video call not being able to hear the rest of the participants, see their image, or see their shared screen. If the call involves your team members, you can spare a few minutes to resolve the issue. However, there are times when meetings are with clients, and every minute is essential. It is recommended to check the Internet speed before starting the call.
To avoid this inconvenience that can delay or ruin the presentation, the meeting leader should provide the participants with the steps to follow in this tool. This will depend on the importance of the meeting or its purpose and how often it is used.
One of the most important basic requirements is to test the correct microphone, headphones, and camera operation. You should have already installed the application, updated it, and registered the person. These steps should be reviewed a few minutes before the start of the presentation.
Choose the right platform for each virtual meeting.
The tools used to maintain work video conferences have grown considerably recently. Now it is taken for granted to share documents, screens, whiteboards, and chats, create parallel meeting rooms, blur your background or look like you are in a coworking space.
Choosing the platform that best suits our situation and the participant’s needs and abilities is essential for everything to run smoothly.
Pay attention to appearance and convey a professional image.
You have to think that working at home or in a hotel means being prepared differently than in the office. That means your image must match what you want to convey in a work environment. Clothing is also essential when making a video call to show teleworking professionalism.
The room where people are should be bright and quiet. It is recommended that it be neutral and not attract attention. Remember to pay attention to the posture maintained during this time and avoid unfortunate comments with the open mic or inappropriate gestures.
Prepare and lead the critical points of online meetings.
The participants must know in advance the purpose of the meeting, the topics to be discussed, and the objectives.
There are times when improvising could be a better idea. Here the moderator or the meeting organizer plays a crucial role, as they have to ensure that the speeches do not overlap or that the speaking participant has the microphone activated correctly.
It is also highly recommended to maintain order through a list or an index of points to be discussed during the video call. In this way, you can mark the beginning and end of each topic to ensure the efficiency of the online meeting.
Business meetings that need to be correctly planned and moderated differ from face-to-face meetings. Executives must try to motivate their work team remotely to prevent workers from losing that sense of belonging and becoming corporate ambassadors. This time, if well invested, can be substantial and very effective in increasing productivity.
In cases where the meeting is with external clients or participants who do not know each other, they will need to take a few minutes to introduce themselves and get to know each other. Informal meetings can be organized to carry out a team quiz or have a virtual coffee to create a positive and close environment. In these cases, everyone must have the camera activated.
How To Do Online Meetings: Extra Tip
To avoid prolonging online meetings beyond what is necessary, where it isn’t easy to maintain everyone’s interest and participation, it is essential to set a time limit for the meeting. This way, the participants will synthesize their interventions so that the session runs smoothly and effectively.
In addition, it is essential to draw a series of conclusions and transmit them to the rest of the team. In this sense, it is convenient that one of the participants draw up the “minutes” of the meeting in real time, in which all the points discussed, the conclusions, and the agreements reached must be recorded. If unforeseen issues arise, these should be noted and discussed during the next virtual meeting.
In short, we must be aware that video conferencing has come into our lives to stay, and we must take advantage of all its benefits. Online meetings can save companies a lot of time and money. You have to make sure you plan well and be careful with the internet connection of each participant.
Online meetings also allow employees to better adapt to their private lives and increase productivity. However, these recommendations must be followed and carried out effectively and efficiently for virtual meetings to work.
Have you implemented these points in your online work meetings? If so, you’re probably already taking full advantage of virtual meetings. And if not, we invite you to do so to take advantage of video calls and enjoy the following benefits.
Advantages Of Online Meetings
The most obvious: you avoid displacements
Meetings with clients are a perfect option when they are far from your offices. As we said before, formal meetings should last up to an hour or an hour and a half since, after that time, the participants begin to become saturated and lose concentration. Therefore, any more than a 30 minutes trip to have a meeting is a waste of time. Online meetings also prevent the travel of employees who carry out their services remotely.
Allows sharing documents
It is very convenient to share documents live and send files to discuss various topics during online meetings. On the other hand, it is a common problem in face-to-face meetings that one of the participants has forgotten a document in his own office. It also often happens that the computer equipment in the meeting room needs to be prepared to process certain information or requires software installation to view the data. Online meetings solve both problems thanks to the possibility of screen sharing.
Allows you to record the session for later review
If both parties agree, online meetings allow you to record the session on video. This way, you can record all the points and conclusions and review what has been said later. This also prevents the parties from contradicting themselves about what was discussed since everything is recorded, and it is easy to verify what was said.
Simplify schedules and save
Many times, having face-to-face meetings causes the conversations to take other paths, and the essential points still need to be addressed. Additionally, in-person meetings often take longer, resulting in wasted time and reduced productivity. On the other hand, online sessions require the ability to synthesize since communication is more fluid than in person. This need to go to the “root of the problems” in virtual communication makes projects move faster many times.
Allows intervention promptly
If an entire team travels to a meeting, the office is left unattended, along with daily tasks. Online sessions allow a colleague to drop into the discussion for 5 minutes to provide input and then return to their desk to continue with its functions.
Allows for greater availability and scheduling
Balancing agendas to have an online meeting that involves the participation of more than two parties is difficult. In this sense, virtual meetings make it possible for people in third locations to connect and otherwise could not have participated.