6 ways to make virtual meetings more productive

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Today more and more companies hire remote and distributed teams to save costs and find professionals all over the globe. However, while remote work brings benefits for businesses, employees face various challenges, especially during virtual meetings, which are essential and require staying focused and productive.

As a matter of fact, the main reasons for attending virtual meetings are educational and informative. On the other side, virtual events are inclusive, quite easy in administration and there are no geographical or logistical restrictions. As a result, for many companies, they are now a part of the daily routine.

However, when such virtual events take place too often, employees may lose interest and start multitasking during them. In this blog post we would like to share useful tips which will help to make virtual meetings more productive.

Take advantage of reliable collaboration tools

For any virtual event it is important to avoid technical issues and have all necessary tools available. Virola corporate messenger offers a wide range of features which will help employees stay productive:

  • High quality video transmission. In many companies it is necessary to turn video during online conferencing on. In Virola you can enable or disable video transmission with a click during the meeting.
  • Live avatars. With the help of live avatars, employees can show what they are doing and create an effect of presence.
  • Noise suppression. Modern technologies are used to make audio meetings more effective and suppress external sounds.
  • Screen sharing. For online presentations it is important to have the ability to share screen and show other participants your desktop.
  • Files sharing. An ability to send files and keep them available without any limitations helps employees to stay productive and avoid using third party tools to upload and share files. Just drag and drop, attach or paste from the clipboard and the file will be available to all meeting participants.
  • Meetings scheduler. A reminder about an upcoming meeting and its duration can be created directly in the group or private chat room.
  • Nudges sending. If someone is not responding or gets distracted, it is possible to send a nudge to draw attention.

Have a clear virtual meeting agenda

It's not a bad idea to have a clear meeting agenda, so that all participants know exactly what to do and what to expect. Otherwise, some of them may not prepare and miss an opportunity to share important information with other virtual meeting participants.

Consider time zones of participants

While scheduling a virtual event you need to take into account where the participants are located to avoid inconvenient time for those who are in different time zones. If people work outside their regular office hours and have a longer day, this significantly reduces their efficiency and during virtual meetings they will be less productive.

Follow virtual meeting etiquette

To make virtual events efficient it is necessary to follow business etiquette rules and avoid distractions such as children and pets. As a result, the experience from the meeting will be not only enjoyable but also productive:

  • Make sure you have a reliable Internet connection.
  • Turn "do not disturb" status for other messengers to avoid interruptions and external sounds
  • Close unnecessary applications if you share your screen
  • Do not multitask and follow the conversation
  • Mute your microphone if you are not speaking
  • Use your camera only when necessary
  • Dress properly if you use a camera

Minimize distractions

A working headset and well-lit room are not the only requirements for virtual meetings. You need to have a room where children or pets cannot barge in and interrupt you. No matter how funny such situations may be, they distract participants and make meetings less effective.

Follow up

To make meetings more productive it is necessary to sum everything up and send a post-meeting follow-up. In Virola corporate messenger you can share this information in the room where the meeting took place. Moreover, you can apply text formatting to highlight what is expected from the participants. In addition, it is possible to create tasks and assign them to co-workers. Such tasks can be later tracked on the Task board and reassigned to other employees if necessary.

This way, the information will not be lost, and you will make sure that all participants can ask questions and clarify what was not clear. While answering meeting related questions, do this in the group meeting room so that everyone could see your responses to reduce the number of duplicated questions.

If you want your meetings to be always productive you should follow the above recommendations and ask your co-workers to provide you feedback to make sure everyone felt comfortable and took the most out of the virtual meeting.