Remote meetings have become a staple of the current workplace, where virtual collaboration sessions serve vital organizational needs that email or other forms of asynchronous communication can't fully suffice.
While remote meetings keep the workflow going, they have their own sets of challenges. Virtual meeting fatigue and back-to-back meetings lead to disengagement among remote workers in the workplaces.
Employees ignoring check-in questions, hogging airtime, and neglecting agendas, are all signs of ineffective virtual meetings.
While it's hard to build the essence of in-person meetings in the virtual world, there are ways to encourage engagement and leverage technology to make online meetings more productive, engaging, and efficient.
Here are five tips that employers can use to make their meetings effective, interactive, and engaging.
1. Use Meeting Icebreakers
Virtual meetings can be awkward when members are meeting for the first time.
Icebreakers are group facilitation strategies that can assist people in communicating, getting to know one another better, relaxing, and having fun. They're a terrific way to foster a welcoming, creative workplace that promotes learning and collaboration.
Companies can use virtual icebreakers to de-stress their employees before a meeting. Thoughtful icebreaker activities can encourage collaboration, boost employee engagement, generate energy across the company, and even increase employee retention.
Hermis icebreaker and team-building activities are ideal for accommodating a range of work scenarios and personality types.
2. Conduct Fun Interactive Polls
Organizations can break the monotony of the meeting and keep the remote team engaged by getting their real-time feedback through interactive polls.
Fun interactive polls make attendees feel valuable participants instead of mere observers. Live polls provide immediate feedback and higher response rates than typical post-event web or paper forms, and they may be acted on right away.
A live poll is an excellent approach to enhance virtual team development and obtain candid, critical feedback from all meeting participants. In remote conferences, it assists organizations in identifying the flaws in their meetings and discussing viable fixes.
Hermis offers a wide range of polling activities that are fun, interactive, and engaging. Companies can conduct personalized polls for their workforce on Funtivity by Hermis, available on the top video conferencing tools, including Zoom and Webex.
3. Gamify Your Meetings
Even the most intuitive software tools aren't infallible; technical hiccups can occur at any time, leaving organizations in distress as they strive to get everyone on the same page. Lack of social cues and verbal signals in virtual meetings can cause confusion, exhaustion, and disengagement among the attendees.
Gamification techniques are a great way to induce adrenaline, foster meaningful employee engagement, embed two-way communication, and incentivize active listening in virtual meetings.
Organizations can leverage games into their meetings to boost employee engagement. Incentivizing attendees to complete a task is an effective mechanism to achieve employee satisfaction and instant gratification.
Companies need to opt for team-focused gamification activities to turn employees from passive to active. Funtivity by Hermis is ideal for team collaborations, employee training, virtual AGM, employee onboarding sessions to yield an increase in skill-based knowledge, improve factual knowledge and increase employee retention.
4. Communicate the Agenda
Agendas keep meetings focused and on schedule. They also give everyone in the room a chance to talk, which can be difficult in a virtual setting. They further eliminate tangents that are the bane of any meeting, whether in person or virtual.
The host can communicate agendas in advance by specifying the meeting goals and assigning a time limit to each topic. They need to let their team know what they’ll be discussing, which will give the team time to sort out any remote work issues they may be facing.
Gather opinions from the team on discussion topics. Add topics that need discussion and let the team members speak on their subjects. It will increase employee participation and engagement.
5. Reduce Meeting Overload
Meetings without an agenda can result in people not showing up on time, members being unprepared, the wrong people being in the room, attendees being confused about what is going on in the meeting, conversations getting derailed, and people leaving the meeting abruptly.
Recurring meetings serve a purpose, but the host should feel free to call them off if they no longer add value. Meeting cancellations aren't meant as a snub to individuals on the guest list. Removing a meeting from many calendars should be appreciated and considered clutter-free.
Productive meetings stem from collaborative meeting agendas. It is a waste of time to hold a meeting without an outline. The meeting host needs to ensure that they have a set agenda in place to avoid meeting disasters and have meaningful meetings. Cancel out meetings without agendas. Ask team members to propose agenda topics in advance.
Video conferencing has become a transformed communication tool for businesses in remote and hybrid workplaces. Hosting meaningful and fun virtual meetings will improve employee engagement, encourage team bonding, create happy employees who will enjoy working.