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Are You Conducting Engaging, Productive Remote Meetings?

 

With organizations seriously considering remote work as a permanent option for some of their teams, protocols and best practices are important. For example, with the number of remote meetings increasing, it is practical to learn how to optimize them so your teams can collaborate efficiently.

 

Here are 10 ways to do virtual meetings right.

 

Make sure technology is working for you.

Attendance is a must, and that can only happen if everyone in your team has the right devices, capabilities, and systems for video conferencing.

Stick to a formal structure.

With remote meetings, it is best to use the structure for conventional meetings.

An outline of the meeting is also necessary to keep everyone focused and to avoid wasting time.

Reserve a portion of the meeting for socialization. 

Once you have set a general structure for the core of your meeting, make sure to allocate some time for your employees to reconnect with one another.  While these meetings are mainly for work purposes (troubleshooting, brainstorming, planning, etc.), they are also among the very few available ways for teams to bond. Ice breakers are a great way to kick-start discussions and it also helps to conduct remote meetings more often than usual.

Press Mute when necessary.

Because the shift to remote work has been relatively abrupt, it is likely that some team members are not optimally set up for office work at home. This is where the Mute button is especially helpful, and teams should agree among themselves to use it to ensure a focused meeting.

Give everyone a chance to speak.

Because muting and the lack of social cues can considerably hinder communication, your facilitator must ensure that everyone gets to say something. This prevents some people from fading into the background.

React with words to avoid misunderstanding and awkwardness.

The more people there are in a meeting, the bigger the challenge of keeping track of what is being said and the responses and reactions, even though everyone can see each other’s face.

Make good use of the chat function and video capabilities of your virtual meeting tool.

Make good use of the chat function and video capabilities of your virtual meeting tool.

The chat window facilitates notetaking and asking questions without interrupting the presenter. Turning on your video is also a great way to keep everyone actively participating. If you choose to video-conference, agree among yourselves to find a spot in your home that is free from distraction.

Use these meetings to deal with the difficult issues as well. 

There is no need to wait until everyone is back in the office, especially when there is no specific date of when that will happen. The resolution of these problems may actually be crucial to the organization’s ability to adapt to the drastic changes brought on by the pandemic

Implement a dress code.

While keeping things relaxed is generally the unwritten rule, make sure that your teams are on the same page about the kind of relaxed that is acceptable for you.

Lastly and more importantly, show respect and courtesy to your colleagues.

Just as everywhere else, there are rules of etiquette to observe in virtual meetings. These changes are affecting everyone, the more you work together, the easier it will be.

Get expert help in navigating the workplace communication in the New Normal.

Contact Payroll Systems today.  We pair human skills and empathy with the latest technology to take on our clients’ HR and payroll processes. Leverage our easily scalable solutions—from paperless new employee onboarding, paperless benefit enrollment, timekeeping systems with companion mobile app, physical clocks, and customized job costing and labor distribution reporting.

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This article provides general information and shouldn’t be construed as legal or HR advice. Since employment laws may change over time and can vary by location and industry, please consult a lawyer or HR expert for advice specific to your business. You can also contact Payroll Systems to inquire about our HR support services.