25 not-so-average tips for better-than-average online meetings

We love to hate meetings, especially virtual meetings. Probably with good reason. Here are 25 tips for online meetings (and the workflows around them) with zero extra fluff.

1.   Edit the system-generated meeting invite to include meeting-relevant information

2.   Let people know in advance that they’ll be on camera

3.   Include a link to a time zone converter

4.   Teach presenters only what they need to know

5.   Know what attendees are seeing so you can help guide their experience

6.   Save time by scheduling recurring meetings

7.   Teach attendees how to mute/unmute themselves

8.   Let participants know you’re recording

9.   Design the “user experience” of your meeting with mobile users in mind

10.  Save meeting chat digitally to save re-typing notes

11.  Turn features on and off to keep participants focused

12.  Pause your screen to avoid sharing private information

13.  Use chat to share a hot (web) link

14.  Verbally instruct people how to use a tool or feature

15.  Keep presentation or speaking segments shorter than in-person

16.  Ask people explicitly to avoid multitasking

17.  Use speaking indicators to call on people by name

18.  Change your display name to how you want people to refer to you

19.  Use a Word document (or equivalent) as an editable working agenda

20.  Adjust gestures and expressions for the camera’s eye

21.  Be aware of what’s behind you to avoid distracting participants

22.  Collaborate on a single document by sharing keyboard/mouse control

23.  Use USB headsets instead of computer microphone and speakers

24.  Know the system requirements for the meeting recording

25. Combine the follow up email with an invitation for the next meeting


Curious about the context of any of these – how it applies in your technical environment or how to execute in your team or organizational setting? Give me a shout.

Roger Courville is the first speaker in the world to earn his Certified Speaking Professional designation with a predominantly virtual business model. Once dubbed “The Michael Jordan of Virtual Presentations,” Roger is a multi-book author, award winning writer, and multi-company entrepreneur. His consulting and training clients include organizations as diverse as FedEx, Australia Institute of Training and Development, American Management Association, US Bank and, of course, that little company down the street that you’ve never heard about but who rocks the world every day. And he loves habaneros.

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