"Have 15 minutes back"

5 ways to get more from virtual meetings

Although many of us are virtual meeting veterans after the pandemic, it never hurts to go back to basics. It’s easy to be a bit lax or schedule too many meetings simply because it’s too easy to arrange, so think carefully about each meeting, its objectives, and how to get the most from it.

Here’s the Cloud Community’s top tips for getting the most out of your virtual meeting rooms.

1 – Don’t just “put in a call”

Although virtual meetings are incredibly easy to create, avoid “meeting for meeting’s sake”. To ensure each session is productive, plan ahead and produce a short agenda, even if it’s only a few bullet points. Modern tools all have a feature to take efficient notes, so do so and circulate them to all attendees after the meeting.

2 – Think outcomes

The goal of a call can range from anything to planning a new customer onboarding process to getting quickfire updates from team members with their goals for the day. As long as the agenda is clearly defined, virtual meeting rooms can be just as productive as face-to-face equivalents. Work through the goals efficiently until next steps or outcomes have been achieved.

3 – Do formalities, then get down to business

As each of your colleagues arrives, greet them. This makes it feel like an in-person meeting when people gather and take their place at the table. When everyone has arrived, get down to business quickly.

4 – “Giving you time back”

This has become a cliché for a meeting finishing ‘early’. In reality, just because a meeting was scheduled for 30 minutes but you’ve efficiently worked through everything in 15 minutes, wrap up and get on with your day. To make things even more efficient, record your meetings and listen back to where you could have saved time, and to refer back to as needed.

5 – Assign tasks and then execute

You should be leaving every virtual meeting with each team member knowing tasks and deadlines. Whether you have daily, weekly or fortnightly calls, review the progress on the action points at your next meeting.

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