Do you want to make a huge impact on important virtual meetings? If you are looking for effective tips for virtual meetings, you came to the right place.
The pandemic created opportunities for everyone to explore virtual meetings and conferences more. Did you know that from 2010 to 2020, the number of remote employees increased by 400%? By 2022, we’re also expecting to see a 77% increase in remote work from 2019.
At the crux of remote work lie virtual conferences and meetings. Hosting and joining virtual meetings for work purposes is easy. If you want to be more professional, keep reading our tips for virtual meetings below.
1. Prepare Well for the Meetings
For the first of our virtual meeting tips, let’s start with preparations. Keep in mind that proper preparation prevents poor performance. If you want a professional edge over other competitors or applicants, prepare well.
Start by finding a place or room where you can put all your focus on the meeting. Go somewhere in the home that’s quiet, clean, and free from distractions. If you’re using a personal computer, clean up the surrounding room.
Keep crying babies or kids away from the room for the duration of the meeting. Noise and passing people won’t only distract you but also other participants. Stick against a neutral background or pick a neutral virtual background.
Before the meeting starts, sit and place the camera at eye level. This is the most flattering angle, and best imitates realism in virtual conversations. If you are using a laptop, try to prop up the laptop so that its camera is at eye level.
Finally, wear something that makes you look professional and presentable. Fix your hair and do your makeup if you must. When dressing up, imagine that you’re heading to the office for the meeting.
2. Mind Your Body Language in Virtual Meetings
Research says that communication is 55% visual, 38% vocal, and 7% word choice. Even as we adopt virtual communication medium, body language still plays a huge role in delivery. Thus, it’s always important to act as you would in a live conversation.
There are some exceptions in virtual meetings, of course. Since the head and upper body are often only seen, you can give more focus on them. Don’t be afraid to smile, nod, and use hand gestures.
Keep your eyes trained on your camera when you’re speaking. This will help you establish an “eye-to-eye” connection with other participants. Although you won’t see their reactions, it’ll give the illusion that you’re speaking directly to them.
With that said, an important part of virtual meeting etiquette is to keep your video screen on. In some cases, like virtual classes, it’s okay to turn off your video screen during the meeting. However, if you want to show active participation, keep your screen on; it’s only polite.
They may be moments when you need to turn off your video screen. For example, your bandwidth won’t allow for good communication if you turn on your camera. If the issue is a messy background, remember that there are virtual backgrounds for your use.
3. Be Punctual and Clear About Your Meeting Schedule for Virtual Meetings
An advantage of being in remote work is that you have more time to do other things. You don’t have to leave the house an hour early to avoid traffic or the risk of being late. Even so, don’t be overconfident about your time. Remember, connection or tech issues can occur at the last minute.
Be ready at least 30 minutes before the meeting. While you wait, review your presentation and check that everything is working. If you’re hosting the meeting, start and end the virtual conference at the agreed time.
If you’re going to be late for the virtual conference, give notice as soon as possible. If you plan to join or host another virtual meeting, make sure everyone knows about it before logging out. Visit https://setapp.com/how-to/schedule-meetings-across-time-zones for setting meetings across time zones.
Another action to take is to set expectations for the next meeting before you end. Inform participants of their roles and responsibility. Tell them what to do if they lose connection or if they can’t join the virtual conference.
4. Optimize by Keeping Your Focus on the Subject in Virtual Meeting
Professional and effective virtual meeting work best when you stick to the agenda. Keep your focus on the discussion, and don’t try to make it about you. Don’t allow distractions to enter the conversation, and if they do, segue back to your schema.
If you have many things to discuss in this one meeting, make sure you have enough time. Push things along if everyone starts to focus on one subject. In the same vein, if the meeting starts dragging, get it moving back to pace.
Holding optimized virtual meetings will increase participant productivity and motivation. You can optimize team meetings by setting boundaries or offering scripts to employees. It also helps to try out different platforms that best suit different meeting goals.
5. Keep Open Opportunities for Interaction and Speaking
For the final item in our tips for virtual meetings, be open and engaging. Don’t try to monopolize the time speaking only. Keep the meeting dynamic to avoid participants from getting bored and distracted.
If the participants are getting bored, reel them back with icebreakers or a short break. You can create polls, share trivia, or check-in with them. These things can break the monotony of a meeting and reignite member interests.
Big meetings can seem overwhelming, and many members may hesitate to share their ideas with a large audience. Create breakout rooms for people who want to share their ideas with a smaller group. Breakout rooms are also perfect for brainstorming and getting clarifications.
Use These Tips For Virtual Meetings and Improve Your Professionalism Today
Professionalism is a good color for all employees, no matter what industry they belong in. In a time of virtual meetings, professionalism remains a feature of excellent workers.
If you want to read other guides that can boost your professional front, check out our other content now.