New Zealand kea parrots are known to sing to others when they are in a good mood, making them the first known non-mammal species to communicate "with infectious laughter," according to a study published in Current Biology.
Meetings are no laughing matter, but they are a good way to communicate, especially with a greater number of remote workers. Yet, with the increased distance, they can also be more challenging. So, today we provide you with a guide for remote meeting management to keep performance and productivity up.
- First and foremost, you should determine if a meeting is needed. While this sounds easy enough, this short list of reminders provided by a Thoughtexchange HR executive is helpful to review. You should have a meeting if you need to: 1) influence others; 2) make decisions; 3) solve problems; 4) inform and connect.
- Once you have determined that a meeting is needed, the agenda should be set. For the most engagement allow other meeting participants to collaborate on the agenda topics. This way, you ensure that the right people are in the meeting and the most engaging topics will be discussed.
- Once you have established the agenda topics and the participants, you need to set expectations. Give the participants enough time to do any research, if needed. Explain upfront what you need to hear or see on the various topics. Is it a quick update or a creative brainstorming meeting?
- With all meetings, you want to engage attendees. In today's remote world, this can be more difficult. However, you can use technology to your advantage in some ways.You can have participants "raise their hand" if they are more quiet-spoken or "chat" if they don't want to disrupt the conversation but want to add something when appropriate. Engagement is key in meeting management as Klaxoon's America in Meetings study found 38% of employees daydream in meetings and conference calls. If they are engaged, they won't be daydreaming.
- To help keep everyone's attention, remember to blend in impactful visuals. Share your screen to show infographics, colorful charts or even pictures to capture the meeting participants' attention. To figure out which visuals are the best, ask yourself some questions like: what is the key takeaway of this meeting or what should each participant be expected to do after this meeting?
- Lastly, you will want to be sure that meetings are timed appropriately. People start tuning out, if they get too long or too off track. Keeping participants "on-task" and taking individual matters "offline" is one way to keep the meeting on track, of course. But, don't be too strict -- try to integrate levity and fun when and if appropriate. Meetings are an important way to connect with colleagues too.