One benefit of the past year is that it is now 100% acceptable to show up to your online conference call in sweatpants and excuse yourself in the middle of the call to grab a cup of coffee and let the dog out!
But just because no one ever needs to see your knees again, it doesn’t mean that there isn’t proper etiquette for that virtual meeting. In 2021, the tenor has shifted to how you prepare, focus, and treat others. Define these rules for your staff, and you’ll have more productive digital meetings.
Here are some suggestions for making the most of virtual meetings!
Proper Virtual Meeting Etiquette
With virtual meetings, it’s all about preparation. The better prepared you are, the more productive the outcome.
Here are some tips for maximizing your virtual meetings.
Ask for an Agenda
If you get invited to a meeting, and there is no agenda forthcoming, it’s ok to ask for one. In the digital realm, time is the most important resource you have. Ask for an agenda, prepare for your meeting and keep them productive.
Make time to prepare. Do your research, comment on the agenda. Send notes if you have items to add to the discussion. Do your best to make the time productive for everyone!
Psyche Yourself Up
Five minutes before, stand up, stretch, take a walk, grab a beverage. Consider logging in from a different room, or at least a different part of the room. Changing your environment can help you stay engaged and focused.
Let Others Know That You’re in a Meeting
If you share your space, let everyone know that you’re in a meeting. Make it known if it’s ok to interrupt you if they need something… like help with their juice box!
Turn off chat applications, log out of social media, and turn off your phone.
Log in Early!
Don’t wait until the last minute. If you do, you’ll start the meeting distracted. Logging in five minutes before start time is good etiquette. The exception? If you’re a guest at someone else’s platform, show up right on time to avoid any potential issues.
Be aware of non-native speakers. Many rely on reading lips or watching your face to gain context. Without those cues, they will need you to slow down.
The Rules Have Changed
Proper online etiquette is changing every day. General etiquette rules still apply, like don’t make comments that degrade others, be respectful of the host, and don’t talk over people. Virtual meeting etiquette exists to smooth out the experience to keep things productive.
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