As concerns over COVID-19 grow, entrepreneurs and business owners have to rethink business practices and face-to-face interactions. This will cause many of us to think “how do I continue to grow and engage with our employees and consumers?
The advantage of virtual and online meetings is the ability to hold them almost anywhere. Through live audio, live video, pre-recorded videos, and other forms of online interactions, we can create an easy shared experience that allows us to stay connected while working remotely. Live video sessions are a great place to start as they are the most natural by creating a proxy for the usual meeting environments.
Emails and messaging are often prone to misinterpretation as it’s difficult to understand context, inflection and subtext. By making the switch to virtual meetings, especially with live video, we can elevate these conversations and have the face-to-face interaction that we’re otherwise missing. This also helps to eliminate any confusion or misinterpretations.
Online video conference services such as Zoom and Google Hangouts are both easy to use and extremely effective when conducting meetings. With applications such as screen sharing and chat rooms, you can easily communicate and showcase important points and presentations. These online sessions also allow for in the moment collaboration and innovation in real-time.
Preparing For Your Meeting
- Ensure you are utilizing the best online service for your specific needs
- Test your technology
- Don’t wing it! Prepare and practice your talking points to ensure the best possible delivery
- Prepare an agenda
- When meeting with clients, partners, and/or prospects, make sure you and your surroundings are clean, clear and professional
The key to a successful video conference or phone conference meeting is to remember that you are still in a meeting!
- Prior to your meetings, it might be a great idea to send or post a quick note in the chat window so everyone knows how to interact in real-time
Manage Your Time Appropriately
- Create an agenda! This is extremely important to ensure that you cover all topics needed
- Have a cut off time: the last thing you want is to get distracted or carried away in conversation and realize you’ve just spent the whole day in a video chat. By allocating a specific amount of time to your meetings, you ensure they are effective
Engaging Your Audience
- Clearly communicate with those in the meeting
- Take the time to ask questions and ensure everyone is understanding the content
- Be inviting! Create a positive tone and environment for your meetings
Online meetings don’t always have to be live. It’s easy to pre-record presentations and content, which gives you time to ensure the quality and information is on point. Recording your live meetings is also a great way to have the information saved for those who were not able to join in, or for easy to find future references or training materials. With all the relevant meeting content and discussions in one place, you can spend less time hunting down information and staying focused on what matters.
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