7 Tips to Run Virtual Meetings More Efficiently


7 Tips to Run Virtual Meetings More Efficiently
Beth Worthy

Beth Worthy

5/19/2020

Virtual meetings are quick to arrange, allow the most relevant members to dial in from wherever they are, and are often quite inexpensive. However, getting meetings right can be difficult. To succeed with virtual meetings, you need to approach them differently from traditional in-person meetings.

Here are seven tips that you can use to prepare and run an effective virtual meeting.

 

1. Choose the Right Technology

There are dozens of tools that can help you run an online meeting more efficiently. Figure out which one to use for your remote meeting. 

Consider the key functionality you will need to make the meeting successful. For example, if you are pitching a new product, you may want to see the facial reaction of the people attending the meeting. In such a case, a video conferencing tool will be essential. If you want the team members to collaborate on writing sometime, Google Docs will be handy.

2. Avoid Behaviors That Drain the Bandwidth

Do not start any bandwidth-intensive activities just before, or during, a virtual meeting (on Zoom or any other tool) on your device — and as much as possible on various computers and devices that share your Internet connection — avoid:

  • Big downloads
  • Big uploads
  • Online sharing (e.g., Netflix, Hulu, YouTube)
  • Cloud backup (e.g., Carbonite, CrashPlan)
  • Cloud file sharing (e.g., OneDrive, Dropbox)
  • Other high-bandwidth activities; 

Communicate with your meeting host. If the best internet connection you have for Zoom is a slow one, such as a poor cellular data link, please let the person or people running your session know ahead of time. The easiest way to deal with the limited bandwidth of the internet is to ask the admin to send the recording and then transcribe it using a professional transcription services provider.

3. Set an Agenda and Agree on the Guidelines

Your remote meeting needs an agenda. If possible, set the agenda beforehand and let the meeting attendees know so that they can review it and brainstorm before the meeting starts. 

Cover the following in the agenda:

  • Key subjects that will be discussed
  • How the meeting will be structured, e.g. how much time will be allocated for the discussions
  • Team members that will be attending
  • What each person attending the meeting will be responsible for
  • Any relevant research, documents or files that will be required for the meeting

Everyone attending the meeting should have clear expectations about what they are going to do.

4. Set the Ground Rules

Ground rules help to ensure order in a virtual meeting as they guide how people should behave. Make a list of ground rules for the meeting. For example, you can require attendees to log into the meeting five minutes earlier to check that their audio and video applications are working.

Other ground rules you can establish include:

  • Asking people to say their names before speaking (if you are holding an audio-only call)
  • Asking attendees to limit distractions during the meeting, e.g., eliminating background noises, switching off mobile phones, etc.
  • Asking participants to avoid working on other tasks, such as checking email, during the meeting

Remember, a virtual meeting is just like an in-person meeting. People want to be heard, respected, and seen. Therefore, practice common courtesy.

5. Keep the Members Engaged

Make sure everyone attending the meeting is engaged from the beginning to the end. Here is a simple tip: allow for casual conversations before the start of the meeting. Check up with the members and ask them to introduce themselves. You can also assign the members a job so that they feel they are part of the meeting.

6. Follow Up After the Meeting

For a meeting to be effective, all participants should have clear objectives when it ends. In particular, make sure the following are clear:

  • The next steps and deliverables expected
  • The due date for specific deliverables
  • People responsible for the various tasks agreed upon
  • When the next check-in or meeting will be

If you were the host, follow up with the participants to find out how the meeting went. You can do this through one-on-one face conversations or by asking participants to fill an anonymous feedback survey. The information you get will help you know what to do to make future meetings even more successful. Also, remember to send transcripts of the meeting to the attendees. You may get the transcripts prepared using business transcription services that do meeting transcription.

7. Transcribe Zoom Meetings and Recordings

You will have to take the following steps to transcribe the Zoom meeting:

  • Start Call Recording - Click on the "Record" icon on the right side of the control panel at the bottom of the screen when you enter the meeting.
  • End the call and save the recording - Click on the "End Meeting" button at the bottom right of the screen when the meeting is over. A video and audio recording of your call will then be saved. 
  • You can visit GMR Transcription on a web browser to install our Easy2Transcribe app for mobile devices. 
  • Click on the "Client Register" button. After shortly filling out your information, there will be a one-time $1 processing fee (we charge a $1 registration fee because we need to validate the account. We will not allow any upfront fees for transactions, but the registration process can verify that you are a real customer. You can also use a different payment method when you pay for transcripts). 
  • When you are registered, upload your audio or video file by browsing the file on your computer or mobile device, drag it to the 'Upload Files' screen and pick the service information and turnaround choice. As soon as you submit your order, work starts immediately. Our certified U.S. transcriptionists will transcribe your files.
  • Each file undergoes a quality check prior to approval. Track your order's progress by logging in to your account. 
  • You pay and get the transcribed document by email. You can also download it while logged into your account.

Running an efficient virtual meeting can seem difficult. However, it doesn’t have to be. Following the seven tips above will ensure you end up with a successful virtual meeting.
 

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Beth Worthy

Beth Worthy

Beth Worthy is the President of GMR Transcription Services, Inc an Orange County, California based company that has been providing accurate and affordable transcription services since 2004. She has enjoyed success at GMR for almost ten years now and has helped the company grow. Within two years of Beth managing GMR Transcription, it had doubled in sales and was named one of the OC Business Journal’s fastest-growing private companies. Outside of work, she likes spending time with her husband and two kids.