Conference meetings are an essential part of our professional lives, but the feeling of zoom link meeting content looming over us is all too common. The ensuing fear and time spent doing nothing overlaps with the work being done and hinders productivity and enthusiasm at work. If your employee finds themselves acquiescing to this sentiment, employers and managers need to go the extra mile to make virtual meetings appealing.
In a meeting and productivity survey, 91% of attendees admitted to daydreaming during online meetings, while 39% of those meetings were spent dozing. However, the strongest of all statistics was that around 50% agreed that they thought meetings were a waste of time.
Below, the 5 important tips to adapt to hold an effective and successful conference meeting:
- Select the competent tools
Meetings are essential and can be very productive, but they can also turn into chaos very quickly as more and more people join. Having a meeting with 5 people is not the same experience as having one with hundreds of people, which is why delegating tasks and finding the right tools is just as important as the topic of the meeting.
While there are multiple collaborative platforms that allow hundreds of participants, there are very few tools to monitor and participate together. Choosing the right tool for a virtual conference helps energize the meeting and makes the meeting fun, interactive, efficient and successful.
It’s time for every team to invest in the right team collaboration software to ensure meetings run as smoothly as possible. Smart filters, preview files, seamless collaboration tools, and more. are essential for smooth calls and collaboration.
- Invite the appropriate participants from the teams
Handling things with etiquette is an essential quality one must possess, and the same goes for conference calls: which, at first, may seem like an easy task. Keeping track of which team members join and defining their role in the call is the first step to having a successful meeting.
Invitations should be sent well in advance to avoid confusion, and using Google Calendars reminders is not a bad idea! Invitations should include some information such as a short introduction, conference agenda, purpose, date and time, contact details, and some supporting documents.
- Set an agenda and stick to it
There’s nothing a little practice won’t solve, and that’s especially true when it comes to conference meetings. Many people assume this is an easy task, but having more than a hundred people in attendance can be overwhelming.
Having too many goals and trying to conquer them all can be counterproductive, with so many things to deal with – you might find yourself unable to focus on a single goal.
The average professional spends 21.5 hours in a meeting, and it’s important that everyone counts. That’s why focusing on a set of actionable topics keeps the meeting fresh and interesting, and venturing with a single mind ensures employees don’t feel lost in a jumble of topics.
- To engage everyone, include fun elements in the meeting
While attending meetings is a norm, meetings shouldn’t feel like an obligation, but a way to connect with like-minded people. It is important to have voluntary participation, otherwise the meeting could easily feel like a chore.
However, it is a fact that people feel more connected in meetings that take place in person. 86% of the crowd in a Harvard study said they were more likely to engage in person.
But don’t worry, because as essential as online meetings are, they’re relatively easy to break if you have the right plan and know how to engage the audience.
Meetings that last for a long time can seem tedious and lead to a lack of concentration, so to break the tension, you can try engaging with the participants. Make sure you have a weekly meeting where you talk about non-work related events so employees have a support system.
- Assign someone to take meeting minutes (MOM)
Sometimes a conference takes longer than expected because you can lose track of time and even the smallest details of the call. To avoid mishaps, it is important to keep track of time by designating someone to jot down meeting minutes to prevent meetings from getting drawn out.
(Author Sudhir Naidu, Founder and CEO, Troop Messenger and the opinions expressed in this article are his own)