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Audio Blog #30

How to make your virtual meetings productive!

So how do you go from chaos at the controls to seamlessly productive virtual meetings?

Listen in to learn the top two actions you need to take to make your next virtual meeting a complete success.

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Did you see Episode #85?

Last week I had an opportunity to chat about The Fibro Fix with Amanda Elise Love on Episode #85. Amanda spent years suffering from a mysterious illness affecting every aspect of her life. With patience and determination, Amanda found personal relief and is now sharing her program, The Fibro Fix with any and all who are in need of comfort. Be sure to take a moment to check it out if you haven’t done so already.

Audio Blog #30

How to make your virtual meetings productive!

This week we are discussing virtual meetings! Like many of you I am hosting and attending multiple FaceTime calls, Skype meetings, Join.me technical support interactions and Zoom calls daily. It can be hectic but to be honest, I appreciate the lack of commute!

Not long ago, pre-pandemic one year, I put over 70,000 miles on my truck from the daily commute to my daughters school and client offices across Massachusetts!

My silver lining in the pandemic has been the digital awakening everyone has experienced. From grocery shopping to prescriptions there is very little you can’t accomplish from the comfort of your home. This has made each and every one of my clients, no matter where they were in their practice, take notice of how important it was to digitize their sales practice and our meetings.

What I don’t appreciate is the inability to feel productive in Zoom calls when the call host is unfamiliar with the digital platform they have chosen or with presenting!

Never take for granted attendance on any virtual meeting!

I think as adults we have all become familiar with the occasional child or pet joining a virtual conversation and this is not only normal but should be completely acceptable. I’m not referring to the curve ball instances life throws in our direction.

I’m referring to moments similar to the Progressive commercial before Jamie starts singing and everyone shuts him down! When multiple voices attempt to be heard over various background noises like vacuums or construction next door or a trash truck making neighborhood rounds.

I’m referring to moments similar to the Progressive commercial before Jamie starts discussing big disco snouts! When multiple voices attempt to be heard over various background noises from vacuums to construction next door or a trash truck making the neighborhood rounds.

As a host of any gathering, respecting your attendees, prospects and even employees time, should be at the top of your to do list always! Never take for granted attendance on any virtual meeting!

Do you remember when the pandemic began and there were silly TikTok videos of classroom pranks? Reconnecting screens are the least of what was occurring in most meetings this Spring!
How do you go from spinning your wheels and wasting time in virtual group meetings. To making significant progress and leaving each attendee feeling as though they comprehend the information provided as well as how they play a part in the progress of the project discussed.
It’s really quite simple and you can literally boil it down to two words Prepare and Engage!

Two words to make your next virtual meeting a success!

Prepare & Engage

  1. Prepare Yourself:

-Even if you know what you are going to present, practice reading through your material while using the software at least once prior to your call.

-Create an agenda for each call you plan to conduct. This will allow you to maintain the direction of the call and ensure you cover all intended topics.

-Create clear guidelines for your attendees. Let them know how you would like the call to flow. Clarify how and when you would like attendees to participate.

2. Prepare your technology.

-Familiarize yourself with the platform functions and features. Edit the settings to mute all attendees upon entering the room to avoid interruptions during your presentation.

-Schedule a quick test call with a friend, family member or even an old or alternate device you may have available.

-Check your background! Is there anything in your space that may distract from the material being presented? Remove it for the call, set up a virtual background or switch spaces.

-Open and prepare any materials or screens you intend to share. This will help to reduce any number of hiccups your device could run into as you can easily correct them before the call.

3. Prepare your attendees.

-Prepare your attendees for what you plan to present with a brief reminder email including the call agenda, meeting details and guidelines.

-Be sure to send the reminder email, including all call details, two to three times before your call begins. The first reminder email should be sent immediately after the attendee confirms they will be in attendance. The second reminder email should appear in their inbox a couple of days or the day before your call. The final reminder should be sent within one hour of the scheduled call.

-Take a moment before you being your meeting to review the guidelines, the agenda and anticipated call flow with your attendees.

Engage:
Yes, it is productive to have lines muted when the host is presenting but you don’t want your attendees to become distracted or disengaged.
Unlike traditional meetings in your office each, attendee is in a different environment with different neighbors, friends or family members engaged in various different scenarios.

  1. Break It Up

-Keep your attendees engaged by breaking up your presentation into speaking points of no more then 3 – 5 minutes. Provide 1-2 minutes of Q& A between each talking point.

-To avoid a sterile lecture style environment and if the presentation allows, utilize the vast medium of content types available. Share an audio clip, a YouTube video, a meme, a tweet or any other content relevant the presentation material to break up the monotony.

2. Platform Features

Virtual communication platforms, be it Zoom or other are often loaded with features and setting to help you conduct your meeting with ease.

-Request that attendees use the ‘Raise your hand’ and chat features to participate.

3. Create Connections

This year has created distance for everyone young and old. We are all adjusting to this new way of life as the pandemic continues to unfold. This is quite possibly the first time you are attempting to manage a remote team. Remember to foster the mental health of everyone you encounter especially your team members.

-Wrap up your call with a review of the information presented before opening up for a final Q & A session.

-Provide for ‘Open Line’ time at the end of your next meeting for networking opportunities and deeper discussions on the material presented.

Do you host a recurring meeting?

Set the tone and save some time!

For recurring meetings be sure to save your reminder email as a template. This will not only save you time but also create a standard for all of your attendees to have familiarity with the meeting flow.
Implement the above steps to become a production powerhouse on your next Zoom call!

If you have any tips, tricks or ideas on how to make your next virtual meeting a success, be sure to let us know in the comments or feel free to send us an email at info@Technology-Equality.com.

I hope you are all continuing to stay safe and keep hand sanitizer and a mask with you at all times!

Are you looking for a new mask design? Check out the Fall line of products in our store. We have masks, tech, home décor and so much more.

That’s it for this week! Thank you for joining me here for this weeks Audio Blog! Until our next episode when we continue to

Hear The Journey ~ Find The Pain ~ Create Solutions
Enjoy The Week!
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