We all have an endless schedule filled with meetings to attend. And many of these meetings are remote nowadays. And this it not necessarily a bad thing. Since this type of meetings often save companies time, money and environmental impact. It's up to you to make your videocalls as productive and engaging as possible. Find our 6 top tips & tricks to get the most out of your remote calls and virtual meetings.
1 Choose the right tech
When hosting a video call from your device, look for decent tech for conferencing. Preferably invest in an intuitive, straightforward UC&C solution that works with your AV peripherals (web cam, sound bar,etc.) and is easy accessible via a user-friendly interface. When you host meeting from the office meeting room, checking out wireless conferencing solutions like ClickShare Conference is useful. They're fully compatible with your BYOM needs and work with any UC&C solution, including your own preferred one or the one you 'have' to use. Why not enjoy all the benefits from the AV setup in the room instead of huddling up with a bunch of colleagues in front of a laptop? Starting remote calls in the office is the same with wireless conferencing solutions, in all huddle, meeting and boardrooms, with different AV USB-peripherals and different UC platforms. Easy, seamless, simple. With the right tool, your remote meetings can be productive and efficient.
2 Create structure
Virtual meetings should be as structured as regular meetings. Meeting basics are the same for both. Set up an agenda and clear objectives to be able to focus on desired outcomes & results. Define topics upfront and assign speakers to each topic. Have a decent follow-up afterwards (e.g. why not send out a short list of action points or a summary ?). Distribute internal rules and stick to them. Assigning clear meeting roles could work for your team calls too. With a timekeeper keeping track of time, a moderator leading the discussion and a recorder taking notes, things go smoothly, even from a distance.
3 Keep the focus
Avoid distractions like food on the table or having the kids or the dog in the same room as you are. And did you know, checking your mail on your phone is considered to be rude in any meeting 😉 Respecting the rules of netiquette, is something we all have to get used to. Both as a remote or in-room attendee! Make sure to keep power point presentations - if any - short and to-the-point, so your colleagues are not tempted to start multi-tasking during the call. Why not take turns when speaking? That'll surely boost the discussion. Which is exactly what a remote call requires: good conversations and active discussions. No long and tiring presentations where you give your audience the opportunity to sit back and time out.
4 Engage with etiquette
Start your remote videocalls with a personal note: a fun story, an inviting question or poll, some small-talk. Greet everyone entering the call as a rule. That's key to creating a personal and warm environment for collaboration. Make sure to involve everyone in the conversation and ask for opinions. Having a good remote meeting is actually a shared responsibility. Capture feedback,especially try to interact with introverts or remote attendees. Integrate round-table questions to make sure everyone has had a chance to speak up. Don’t use offensive language in heated discussions. Remember that different cultures have different communication styles...
5 Integrate tech in an optimal way
Test your tech upfront and integrate solutions like screen sharing, recording options, chat, whiteboarding, raising your hand... in the meeting flow. Even remote participants can actively take part then. Did you know you can use messaging, chat functions and break-out rooms in some UC&C solutions? These come in very handy when having online brainstorms or interactive get-togethers. Use polling and voting when you are addressing larger audiences to raise the level of engagement and create an active participation. And do switch on that video, talking is so much more natural when you have eye contact and can interpret the body language and facial expressions of your co-workers. Explore the media and tech options, they will make your videocalls memorable and establish a more personal connection on a distance.
6 Keep an eye on the schedule
Take cultural differences, time zones and working hours into account when planning meetings. Don't be late for calls and respect end times. Check the location where you calling from. Is your home office tidy? Is your conference room booked? When your regular meeting or conference room is booked, consider a huddle space.
When done right, video conferencing can be highly engaging and effective. Find out how ClickShare technology can help you make this happen.