A committee is a group that keeps minutes and loses hours. ~Milton Berle
In our last post, we explored six tips you can use to improve the productivity of your remote meetings. Today, we continue with six more insights to get the most out of your team.
Make sure everyone understands meeting etiquette and purpose
Establish clear ground rules for your people to follow. For example, ask team members to turn off all other electronics, to stay away from email and to pay attention. Hold people accountable (in a gentle but firm way) for violating these rules.
Despite your best efforts, the meeting can go “off track” or “off purpose” for dozens of reasons. Your people will judge you and talk about these mishaps, no matter what. Rather than suppress this discontent, solicit input, so you can improve and reform the process going forward. Be egoless, and look for creative solutions.
Assign each person clean next actions at the conclusion
People need direction – they need to be led. You’re at the helm, so take the wheel. While you cannot monitor your remote team in person, you can ask for very specific next actions from them. For instance: “Jim, your next step is to call Stephanie about the website.” Or “Angela, you’re going to wait for Kaleb to send you the new copy and then email me once you’ve received it.” Don’t allow the meeting to end ambiguously!
Don’t allow muting
Do not allow your team members to mute their lines during the meeting, as doing so makes it easier for them to avoid participation and become distracted.
One of the most difficult aspects of remote meetings is the lack of face-to-face interaction. It’s hard to read body language if you literally can’t see the other people. Bridge the communication gap by using videoconferencing.
Screensharing technologies can connect remote team members to the presenter’s computer screen, so that they can see what you’re doing in real time, just as they would during a traditional in-person meeting. Many technologies allow you to switch presenters during the meeting, so that different people can share their screens while they are talking.
For additional help, please email or call me for a free consultation. Also, please sign up for my noise-free leadership newsletter (below) for tips and insights that you can’t get anywhere else about how to generate a return on investment from your leadership skills.