With the emergence of the pandemic and its protocols for social distancing and other measures, meetings have taken on new life in the form of virtual video meetings. Whether hosting for planning purposes or simply team calibration, here is a list of pointers for running more effective virtual meetings.

Planning for the Meeting

  • Get to know the virtual platform. According to MBO Partners, you want to start by “learning the ins and outs of a new application.”
  • Identify roles especially host, co-host(s), and guests/ audience.
  • Prepare step by step and be sure to fill in the blanks to cover all aspects such as sharing screen functions, chat/ comment usage or disabled, ground rules for the meeting, and timely meeting invites and reminders.

Security Tips for the Meeting

  • When utilizing a platform like Zoom, you want to ensure to update your meeting protocols with the platform’s latest changes and security updates.
  • Notify guests and co-host(s) what will be required of them to attend the meeting.
  • Decide on attendee permissions before launching your meeting.

General Organizing Tips for the Meeting

  • Virtual Backgrounds
    • Decide on whether or not to use them.
    • If virtual backgrounds are not allowed or frowned upon, state that in your meeting invite and your ground rules.
    • If you encourage virtual backgrounds, prepare with a note or message for the chat on how to establish or switch your virtual background.
    • You might even do as Stanford Magazine suggests, incorporating virtual backgrounds as a form of icebreaker.
  • Audio Control
    • Notify everyone that the host has ultimate control over the entire meeting, especially the audio.
    • Create a slide to serve as a pre-meeting reminder for attendees to mute themselves during the meeting or similar suggestions from the Enterprisers Project.
    • Establish a protocol for muting attendees who do not monitor themselves or their surroundings.

When planning to host a virtual video meeting, take these tips into consideration along with the purpose of your meeting and the type of meeting you have planned. There is plenty to consider long before the meeting even gets scheduled.