nexVortex BLOG

Better Virtual Meetings

Chuck Harris

Clearer communication and energized engagement create a competitive edge.

Many companies are embracing video as their go-to medium for meetings. It saves them time, money and nurtures greater engagement and collaboration. Does your business know how to capitalize on it?

Virtual meetings let companies embrace the huge surge in remote working. Over half of America’s 3.9 million remote workers telecommute full-time, with 70 percent of us doing so at least once a week. Here are some tips on how to be more productive.

Number 1: Limit the invites to key personnel

The content being covered in your conference might affect dozens of people, but that doesn’t mean they all have to be invited. Use your discretion to select only the necessary staff to address the issues and bring about a result. Too many participants will not only add stress to your tech, but it will also dilute the possibility of meaningful input from all concerned.

Name a facilitator for the conference; someone who will clearly notify all other participants of the time, place and what will be covered/expected in an allotted time while answering any questions before it goes live.

This person should set the tone of the call and if necessary bring in the relevant team members at the appropriate points. A good leader will also be responsible for recording the call if necessary to replay to a wider audience.

Number 2: Exploit the visual element

Team members who can see each other benefit from increased understanding, improved levels of trust and superior information transference; all because hearing and seeing allows us to access every modality of human communication.

Video can become vibrant by including visual data like charts, animations, etc. Visuals clarify communication, increase retention and make sure everyone is looking at the same thing at the same time (much better than text-heavy documents where staff may scramble to keep up).

Not every conferencing setup is powerful enough to support the demands of data visualization. If your provider or solution isn’t up to it, you could send the relevant visuals to access independently and switch from video to the best in conference audio.

Number 3: Be prepared and professional

It goes without saying that you should do your research and bring all required data and materials to your virtual conference. Proper conference etiquette requires the following steps:

  • Select proper audio or visual environment. If you’re one of the growing number of employees who are working from home, it’s essential to find as quiet and work-appropriate environment as possible. Having any distracting stimuli going on around you will only make the call harder for everyone. Consider environmental factors like ambient sound and intrusive light sources.
  • Be a considerate speaker. Even the best call tech can lag occasionally. Be aware that your fellow speakers may need a few seconds for your voice to come through. Be patient and give everyone ample time to finish and wait quietly when you’ve had your say to avoid disruptive crosstalk. Remember to keep your input concise and on-topic.
  • Be a visual speaker. Yes, it’s possible. If video is not an option for your company, research shows that it pays to use emotive words when communicating points with your team. The use of team members’ names, definers like “you” and “yours” (rather than “I” or “mine”) have a greater effect on engagement as do words that conjure positive and successful imagery. Even the use of the simple word “together” has seen a 48 percent increase in team effectiveness (source: Becker’s Hospital Review).
  • Be natural. The whole point of a virtual meeting that people want to interact with their colleagues; otherwise, an email would suffice. Some can appreciate that social aspect while others may find it a challenge. Treat virtual as no different than a day at the office.

Number 4: Invest in good technology

The success of all the above hinges 100 percent on the quality of your technology. The best in modern audio conferencing or video conferencing provides an environment where the technology augments the experience as opposed to detracting from it.

If you want to keep your calls (and your team) together, we’re ready to make it happen. nexVortex is a leader in Cloud Communication Services for businesses, specializing in SIP Trunking, multi-site applications, and customized solutions.  Contact us to learn how we can help you improve your business communications.

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