With many organisations forced to go remote in 2020, it has felt like virtual meetings have replaced traditional meetings almost overnight.
In just a few months, video-conferencing applications, for your PC or your phone, saw a sharply increased use, especially among professionals. Online meetings are now the glue that holds many remote teams and businesses together. Under numerous aspects, in fact, virtual meetings have the potential to offer an improved communication experience than their physical counterpart.
For example, beneficiating from a virtual environment eliminates costly organisational procedures. Time-saving is also another important advantage to be considered, chances are, getting all the participants of your meeting together in one place is difficult. For remote teams, attending meetings is an expensive and time-consuming business. The best video conferencing hardware and software helps people to organise fruitful communications without spending a needless amount of time, money, and effort, but be aware, it is important to ensure that effective communication is not being traded for bottom-line savings.
Institutions may have embraced the move to online workspaces, but virtual meetings are still uncharted waters for many new users to navigate. If you are suddenly surfing the world of online video conferencing, here are some insights on how this new tool for the digital industry 4.0 can foster your enterprise if correctly handled.
Foster your communication activities…
First, learn your toolbox, or to say it better, a different application for different use. Service providers in this environment are not offering all the same product. It may vary around the specific needs set by your communication activity, that you will resort to a face-to-face oriented application either than a group meeting or even an online event platform. Additionally, some further considerations might be spent on the audience you want to interact with. Social Media, for example, offer adequate communication tools to interact with a young public, such as integrated video sharing features, perfect for Q&A sessions.
Learn also how to prepare well in advance, as successful virtual meetings require more upfront preparation than you might expect. Unlike a meeting held in a physical location, where you can be more casual about the agenda or the materials provided, virtual meetings leave no space for improvisation. It will be a shared effort from both the organiser as well as the participants, to make sure all the requirements needed before the event are available and checked.
Focus on offering a fluid experience…
Use a moderator. Especially for events addressed to a broader public, the moderator or emcee (master of ceremonies) helps contextualize the information presented throughout the conference. Moving to virtual events, it can come naturally to believe that this emcee role is no longer necessary. The opposite is true. Having a consistent face and voice, that patch together the virtual sessions for the participants, helps alleviate the isolated feeling for attendees. Keep it simple, like having the event moderator opening up the conference online, just like a regular event, and then moderate questions for speakers, coming back and forth in between sessions to chat with attendees.
Lastly, focus on your follow-up activities. Set a timeline for the next meeting and create an invite within two days if possible, and do not forget to gather feedback from your attendees. Try always to find the best practice for your business, in case, implementing some of their suggestions in the next meeting.