6. Be strong on process. Again, from Effective Virtual Conversations, “In the virtual realm, it is really important to have a strong focus on process. This includes:
• Letting people know what they can expect from the process.
• Is there an agenda you will be following? (A meeting template is included at the end of this chapter.)
• How will you be working with time?
• What level of engagement do you expect?
• Will you be going around the room?
7. Set a clear focus for the meeting. Have strict timeframes in mind. This includes sending out agenda items and agreeing on and sticking to time frames. It is likely that different group members will be in different time zones, so going overtime in virtual meetings is usually not respectful. Have a game plan on what absolutely needs to be covered and what can wait.
8. Create ways of working and shared agreements. Just as in team meetings, have agreements about how you will operate, especially around focus, etc.
9. Consider multiple feedback loops. Ask for feedback as you go. Take a “temperature check” or have people identify what they have learned so far.
10. Consider the best platform. Is a conference call the best way to go, or should you consider a more robust platform like Zoom, where you can see each other and have people move into breakouts? The type of meeting you are hosting will influence the platform. Consider the various options. Make sure it is easy so people don’t spend their entire day getting into the call. (Refer to the August 2017 Community Call on Platforms for more on this topic.)
11. Make things visual. From having a place to take notes (if you are on a conference call) to using a virtual whiteboard, to having a photo to anchor the conversation, making things more visual boosts engagement and avoids the Death by Conference Call mindset where people automatically disengage. What visual anchors can you create in your meetings?
Let us know which of these tips resonates most with you?
Enjoy the conversation,
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