How to Run Effective Virtual Meetings

effective virtual meetings

Virtual meetings hit center stage in 2020 because they allow employees on- and off-premises to conveniently connect from various locations for effective collaboration and optimal productivity. These business communications platforms continue to grow in popularity, and their user-friendly features keep evolving. The result? Engaging, inclusive, and productive virtual sessions that give in-person meetings a run for their money.

What Is a Virtual Meeting?

A virtual meeting is a communications technology that enables people in different physical locations to join a shared virtual meeting room (VMR) using their desktop or mobile devices via a mobile data network or Internet connection.

Excellent virtual meeting software has three essential features:

  • User-Friendly Interface
  • Robust Security and Privacy
  • Integration Capabilities

These features allow:

  • Successful Adoption and Collaboration
  • Sensitive Data Protection
  • Access to Virtual Meeting-Enhancing Tools

Different Types of Virtual Meetings

  1. Video Conferencing – offers exemplary face-to-face interaction with high-quality video and audio capabilities, building a virtual experience that can make meeting participants feel as if they are physically in the same room.
  • Web Conferencing – shares similarities with video conferencing but is better suited for employee/team collaboration, using features such as screen-sharing and white-boarding.
  • Webinar – hosts one-way seminars (e.g., leadership sessions, technical demos, etc.) in which panelists/presenters speak to attendees. The presenters connect to audio and video, while the attendees can remain muted and hidden from the screen. However, webinar admins can enable attendee audio or video when needed.
  • Teleconferencing – facilitates the most simplified type of virtual meetings: audio-only meetings. It is the modernization of the “conference call” and well-suited for calls/meetings—quick, formal, or otherwise—that do not require screen sharing or visualizations.

Best Practices for Running Effective Virtual Meetings

It will take more than the best software on the market offers to run an effective virtual meeting. All professional gatherings, in-person or remote, share the same best practices:

  • Agendas and Clear Objectives
  • Engagement and Active Participation
  • Time and Pacing Management

Defined expectations, active participation, and effective time management ensure that meetings are invaluable to achieving business goals. To make it easier to follow the overarching best practices above, let’s break it down:

Agendas and Clear Objectives

Businesses can ensure productivity and maintain focus on relevant topics when they do the following:

  • Define the Meeting’s Purpose
  • Identify the Expected Outcomes
  • Devise a Meeting Timeline – discussion topics, breaks, and activities

Note: A meeting’s timeline should address each discussion topic, the estimated duration of each topic, and any integrated breaks and activities for participants.

With clear expectations, meeting participants can appropriately prepare to engage and collaborate with team members.

Engagement and Active Participation

Fostering engagement and participation means permitting each employee to provide input and collaborate. Methods to increase employee engagement include:

  • Acknowledging Contributors
  • Establishing Equal Speaking Time
  • Mood-Setting Activities
  • Polls and Surveys

Depending on the setting and purpose of the gathering, businesses should also consider interactive activities and open-ended questions. Meeting participation optimization allows companies to enhance productivity while creating a space where open collaboration boosts employee morale.

Time and Pacing Management

Nothing is worse than a derailed meeting or needlessly long or unproductive ones. Strategies to apply include:

  • Setting a Timer
  • Participants Take Turns Speaking
  • Appointing a Facilitator (monitors the timeline)

When meetings derail, drag on longer than expected (or need to), and become disorganized, attendees can quickly disconnect from what is supposed to be a collaborative environment, especially when working in a remote environment that has its own list of additional distractions.

Time is money—businesses and their employees know just how accurate that phrase is. Organizations can avoid wasting valuable time and frustrating their employees by remaining organized and mindful of a meeting’s purpose and time frame.

Call Telecom Experts for the Software and Tools Your Company Needs

CC3 Solutions is your top business telecommunication solutions provider, fulfilling a wide range of telecom needs for organizations of sizes, from small businesses to large enterprises. Customers benefit from hassle-free procurement and installment of mobile devices, digital networks, and cybersecurity technologies. In an age where employees can work anywhere and everywhere, their companies must maintain the mobile digital infrastructure needed to support productivity and business goal achievement.

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