Few aspects of office life inspire more grumbling than meetings. And the fact that they’re taking place almost exclusively online now hasn’t helped their reputation much. But according to U-M Dearborn instructional designer Autumm Caines, who’s been facilitating virtual meetings since 2015, much of the “doom and gloom of Zoom” can be softened with a few simple tweaks to your team’s approach.
One of the most significant ways virtual meetings differ from their in-person counterparts is when two people attempt to talk at the same time. Caines says try leaning on the chat feature a little more in your meetings — especially large meetings. In fact, she says chat is generally a great tool for boosting participation.
Another one of Caines tips: Think of hosting a meeting almost like you’re hosting a party. For example, try assigning a designated greeter, who shows up early to acknowledge each person as they log in and help alleviate the awkwardness for the “first arrivals.”