How to Run Effective Virtual Meetings

Virtual meetings have many of the same challenges like in-person meetings, but with additional distractions and technical obstacles. It is still possible to run an effective virtual meeting if you follow some simple meeting protocol.

An agenda is essential for running virtual meetings on time, as well as keep participants interested throughout the meeting. You can also encourage participation by asking open-ended questions, asking for feedback and assigning roles to participants for taking notes or recording the next steps.

If you’re creating slides or other visuals for your presentation, be sure to test them ahead of time, and also any software or hardware that you may need. Make sure you arrive early enough to resolve any technical issues that may arise prior to the scheduled start time.

You aren’t able to read the body language of others or feel emotions if you’re not able see the participants. So, you should try to keep eye contact with everyone, or request people to do this. It is also recommended to choose a quiet place with no distractions to give your full focus to the meeting. You can turn off your microphone if you’re not talking.

If you’re a moderator take the initiative to ask for feedback from participants at the end of the session. This will help identify areas for improvement and give the participants an understanding of how their input is valued. In the final two minutes of a session, it is also a good practice to summarize the next steps, and to record any action items.