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6+ tips for better virtual meetings

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If you’re working remotely on a desktop Mac, your iPad, an iPhone or even on another platform, it’s possible you’re now trapped in a seemingly unyielding cycle of virtual meetings. So how can you make these meetings more effective and avoid wasting time?

1. Write and use an agenda

I’ve attended meeting with no fixed purpose. This usually means that when matters do crop up, participants are ill-prepared, which means they can become defensive or deliver incomplete responses. It also means others in the group are unable to prepare their own questions. Meeting agendas can help solve this.

Agendas should be:

  • Prepared in advance.
  • Shared among meeting participants.
  • Reviewed by particpants in advance so they can add items for discussion.
  • Managed by the person who calls the meeting and can filter contributions.

All this should take place before the meeting.

Doing so means all parties have the opportunity to fully prepare for and contribute to the meeting. It’s not rocket science, but even this little bit of structure can make for more productive meetings, virtual or otherwise.

You should also appoint a chair, someone who may not have much to provide this particular meeting, but whose job it will be to call out inappropriate or disrespectful behaviour, such as constant interruptions.

It’s also important to take note of which time zones participants are in, using something like the Clock app on iPhone or World Clock Meeting Planner.

2. Avoid repetition through automation

The security flaws with Zoom are well-documented, despite which it has become arguably the most-used video conferencing solution. FaceTime, Skype and Microsoft Teams are also seeing plenty of use.

Copyright © 2020 IDG Communications, Inc.

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