What does a successful online meeting in 2021 look like? With the slow-down of the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s a good chance we’ll get to meet in person once more. Even so, many businesses have realized that the flexibility, versatility, and accessibility of online meetings dominates the benefits of in-person meetings.
So, does that mean everyone will meet online this year? Not exactly, but there will be a number of businesses that continue to utilize online services over in-person meetings. Here’s what it takes to host a successful business meeting online in 2021.
1. Use The Right Platform
We’ve seen dozens of online meeting platforms rise and fall during the COVID-19 pandemic, but there are a few that have stuck around and made a name for themselves. The pandemic has shown us that the platform we’re using truly makes a difference in the overall quality of the meeting. If you want to learn how to livestream events, host productive meetings, and make the most out of the monthly cost of your platform, you need something other than the most popular free options.
Free services simply don’t match the features of a service like Vast. Easy meetings, online streaming services, unlimited conference calls, and more can take your business meetings to the next level. You’ll have full control over all of your calls, plenty of tools to improve the overall efficiency of the meeting, and best of all, conferencing services don’t cost that much!
2. Use An Agenda
If you’re not using an agenda for your meetings in 2021, you’re doing your attendees and yourself a disservice. An agenda is truly important, especially with online meetings, because you need to focus a bit more on keeping everyone on the same page. An agenda should include what you’ll be discussing in the meeting, as well as any relevant links or dial-in numbers.
If you’ve never written an agenda, it’s a good idea to use a template in order to create a professional, straightforward agenda that anyone can understand.
An agenda helps keep the call organized and everyone on track. It also identifies the goals of the meeting and can include a guest list.
3. Be Respectful
The best way to host a successful business meeting in 2021 is to be respectful to everyone else in the call, and to encourage respect in the callers. Imagine you’re hosting an important sales meeting, and someone keeps interrupting and talking over everyone else. This doesn’t help the meeting progress, and, let’s be honest—it can become irritating after a while.
Remember the golden rules of conference calls and online meetings:
- Use the mute button when you’re not talking
- Minimize background noise
- Wait for everyone to finish talking before speaking
- Do your research before the meeting
- Use the raise your hand or ping feature to ask a question
- Always be on time
Keeping your callers engaged in the meeting materials is something of a challenge, whether you’re in-person or online. Viewer engagement is a priority in order to make sure the content is absorbed and digested properly. How do you create engaging content for your meetings?
- Involvement: Keep meeting attendees involved by assigning roles in the meeting or encouraging Q&A during and after the meeting.
- Keep info simple: Simplify information as much as possible to ensure everyone can understand it.
- Don’t take more time than you need: The hours-long meeting is everyone’s corporate nightmare; try to keep meeting shorter for greater engagement and to avoid burnout
- Interactive presentations: An interactive presentation gives callers/attendees something to focus on and keeps them engaged with the content
- Always send a follow-up email: Follow-up emails can help you identify where you did well or performed poorly from an attendee’s perspective
5. Pre-Meeting Troubleshooting
Troubleshooting hardware/software issues during a meeting is incredibly distracting and frustrating. Troubleshooting should be done before the meeting ever starts, and you’ll want to encourage your attendees to also perform troubleshooting before the meeting. If you can, open up the meeting platform a bit early to allow for troubleshooting in-call. Sometimes, issues don’t arise until you’re already in the meeting, so leaving that time cushion can save time during the meeting.
It’s a good idea to make sure you have the latest software version as well for your meeting software, both from a troubleshooting and performance perspective and for the security of the meeting itself. Outdated software is more vulnerable, and you want to keep your meetings private and secure!
The Bottom Line
Successful online meetings require a good agenda, the right platform, and engaging content. Keeping attendees engaged can make meetings far more effective, as the audience will actually absorb what they’re hearing. Be sure to troubleshoot issues before the meeting starts, and make sure to send out detailed invites before the meeting begins; preferably a few days prior.
If you are interested in even more business-related articles and information from us here at Bit Rebels, then we have a lot to choose from.