Almost overnight, remote meetings became one of the most important ways to work and make business. Organizations of all sizes are discovering the possibilities, and the challenges, that this form of communication involves.
The shift to remote work has been sudden and unexpected, but the following tips will make your remote meetings more effective and enjoyable
Use Video During Remote Meetings
Make sure that every member of your team turns on their camera. When working remotely a lot of sensory information related to body language is lost, and video makes up for it. Cues such as nodding, tilting your head or frowning are also important for communication, so seeing each other is essential. Establish this rule early on and enforce it.
Don’t Forget Sound
While video is crucial, you shouldn’t overlook sound. It’s important that all the participants can hear each other clearly and understand what’s being said. Also, if a participant is in a particularly noisy location, is advisable that they mute their microphone when they’re not speaking. Sound should always be a concern for all involved. For example, participants should be encouraged to avoid wearing “noisy” jewelry that may produce distracting sounds during the meeting.
The temptation to do other things during a remote meeting may be strong, especially while others are talking. However, agree with your team that multitasking should be avoided at all costs. If all the participants can be seen on video (see the first point on this list), multitasking becomes more difficult, but ultimately avoiding it is a matter of personal responsibility and professionalism.
Follow Remote Meetings Etiquette
Virtual meetings are a recent innovation, but there is already an etiquette you and your team should keep in mind. For example:
- Make eye contact looking into the camera
- Dress professionally
- Keep body movements to a minimum
- Enunciate clearly
- Be always respectful of others
- Don’t cover the microphone or camera
- Don’t interrupt
Have a facilitator
Conducting a remote meeting is easier if there’s a facilitator. This person is in charge of dictating the pace of the meeting and guiding the team trough the agenda. Usually the person who called the meeting is the facilitator, although this may change depending on the circumstances and the topic being discussed.