Virtual Meetings: Tips to Make Them Effective and Productive

Adriana Girdler

New to virtual meetings, or find them unengaging? Here’s what you need to do Do you want to be a virtual meeting hero? Let’s face …

New to virtual meetings, or find them unengaging? Here’s what you need to do

Do you want to be a virtual meeting hero? Let’s face it, virtual meetings can be monotonous. So, what needs to happen to make them more engaging and productive?

I’ve facilitated hundreds of virtual meetings and I LOVE them. The beauty of technology is that it is convenient and can make work that much more efficient and effective… when USED RIGHT. When you’re having a virtual meeting, there’s already the disadvantage of being far apart from everyone. So how do you combat this?

Right now, I’m going to share with you the same tips I follow that I’ve learned over the years of facilitating virtual meetings.

1 – Test your technology ahead of time

Have you ever been in a virtual meeting (or any meeting for that matter) where the first 15-20 minutes have been wasted by technical difficulties? How frustrating, boring, and stressful is this? Having precious meeting time wasted is the last thing you want, especially when meeting with a group of busy businesspeople who all have their own tasks to be doing. So, with more virtual meetings happening in the business world, it is CRITICAL to take 15-20 minutes BEFORE the meeting to check the tech and ensure everything is working properly.

2 – Meeting timing

Many people find virtual meetings rather dull, but this doesn’t have to be the truth. In a virtual meeting, you don’t have the luxury of taking a 5 minute break together or even putting the meeting on pause to do some exercises as a group. There’s no time for chit-chat before the meeting starts as people trickle in a few minutes early. This can really make the meeting seem unexciting. But it doesn’t have to be!

A great way to deal with this is simply to ensure that the meeting is running no longer than one to two hours MAX. And if you need it to be longer than that, break up the meeting when possible to keep people engaged.

3 – Turn on video

Video is a great tool because body language is powerful. Having only a voice call is like having a meeting in a dark room. So, if you have video capability, make it mandatory. It truly makes an impact on the meeting. Studies have shown that you get more information from people by seeing them in front of you. Take advantage of this knowledge by making video a RULE for your meeting. It makes the meeting more engaging, productive, and exciting.

What else?

These three tips have only scratched the surface of how you can have more productive and engaging business meetings. I’ve put the rest of my tips together in a YouTube video for you to access. Follow me on over to YouTube and we’ll keep talking about how you can have the BEST virtual meetings in business today!


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Adriana Girdler is a project manager, productivity specialist, entrepreneur, professional speaker, facilitator, visioning wizard, and author. As President of CornerStone Dynamics, Adriana is one of Canada’s prominent business productivity and project management specialists—helping both individuals and businesses do what they do, only better. She is a certified master black belt lean six sigma with over 20 years’ experience improving how companies work.

She also holds both PMP (project management professional) and CET (certified engineering technologist) designations. She’s a Tedx speaker, as well as a HuffPost and Thrive Global contributor. She has been interviewed on Global, CBC, CTV, CHCH, 680News Radio, Newstalk 1010, Sirius XM and published in the Globe and Mail and numerous industry magazines. WANT ADRIANA'S FREE ONLINE TRAINING? In 45 min, learn Adriana's 5 project management secrets she use on EVERY project. Sign up for the Free Webinar here: THE FAB FIVE FUNDAMENTALS OF PROJECT MANAGEMENT

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