11th August 2020
by Gordan Stokes

The way we work is changing rapidly and therefore we must adapt and respond quickly. Refer to these tips and strategies on how to conduct a successful virtual meeting that ensures everyone is engaged and able to participate.


As we are discovering during this difficult time, it is imperative to maintain our connection with other people in the community and our work colleagues.  Speaking on the phone, emailing, social media, catching up in person (from a safe distance), the methods are seemingly endless.  However, other than catching up face-to-face (with current limitations) the methods described are never as good as actually seeing the person we are communicating with. There is a connection and immediacy in seeing your colleague, friend, or family member speak to you.  Hence, why video conferencing is such a powerful and important tool in maintaining team focus and connection.

First Steps and How to Connect

As with the usual face-to-face meetings, preparation is important if we are to get the best out of a virtual meeting. What is the purpose of the meeting?  Is it a catch up among colleagues, checking in, now that they are working remotely, and to make sure everyone is going well?  Or is it a more formal business meeting?  Even with informal team catch-ups it is important to go in with an agenda.  Send the agenda to everyone beforehand and also any documents to be discussed. The last thing you want is multiple streams of people reading and not actually talking.  Someone should be nominated to chair the meeting and to keep it on track.  Another important element is the tool or platform you will use for the meeting.  There are many products offering different functionality. Some will suit your needs, and some won’t.  Skype, Zoom, GoToWebinar, and MS Teams are only some of the better-known solutions.  Whatever you use, test it thoroughly and ensure everyone can use it and trouble-shoot it if they need to. 

The Meeting

With the agenda clear and everyone connected and visible to everyone else we are ready to start.  Make sure everyone is clear on the purpose of the meeting and agenda and then go to each participant to give a brief check-in, breaking the ice and putting people at ease. The meeting should move on to each topic with the participants actively encouraged by name for their input.  Everyone in the meeting should treat it as if it were an in-person meeting, so no checking of phones, zoning out (regular requests for an opinion from an attentive leader will stop people’s minds wandering), or other activities not directly related to the meeting.  For regular meetings, a different person should run each meeting and the agenda kept fresh as possible. 

Social Connection

Under the unique circumstances we are facing, the importance of video conferencing has grown considerably. Interacting and collaborating with our colleagues is imperative for our, their, and our organisation’s success.  Video conferencing, uniquely, allows this, but even more importantly in this time of isolation, it provides a powerful tool for staying connected to our colleagues and company.

Key Takeaways

  • Clarity on the expected outcome of each video conference, treat it as any normal business meeting
  • Ensure the technology is appropriate and that everyone can use it
  • Provide information and agenda beforehand, expect required documents are read
  • Allow creativity and fun but also keep on agenda during the meeting
  • Ensure everyone contributes, a good meeting will include and encourage all participants
  • Action items should be clear and agreed on. 
  • Follow up the meeting with feedback from participants. 
  • Make changes as you go, the uniqueness of the situation means reviewing and refining is very important. 

Subscribe to our newsletter for the latest updates, news and offers