Among the several incredible technological advancements that the world has witnessed recently, one and the most popular of them is hosting meetings through the internet. These meetings are popularly known as online meetings. The relevance of these meetings has increased in recent years, when the world, more or less, has shifted digitally.
Here, in this blog, we have discussed online meetings in detail. So, if you were also looking for a guide that will help you understand online meetings thoroughly, you are at the right place. So, without further ado, let us drive straight into the blog.
What is the Meaning of Online Meetings?
Online Meetings can be defined as the interactions or meet-ups that take place over Online Meeting Platforms instead of taking place physically. These meetings are real-time, and they are as immersive as real-life meetings; all thanks to the interactive features that these online meeting platforms come with.
Online meetings allow the attendees to connect with each other and discuss a shared objective. Online meetings gained popularity, ever since the world was affected by the pandemic, and organizations across the globe adapted to remote working.
What Are the Advantages of Online Meetings?
Online meetings are less expensive compared to physical meetings; the reason is they don’t require the attendees to travel. Not only this, with online meetings, the organizers don’t need to book a venue, look out for caterers, and look after other things, similar to physical meetings.
Since online meetings don’t require traveling, they allow the organizers to tap into a wider range of audiences. Online meetings are beyond geographical constraints, and it is the reason the organizers stand a chance to expand the reach of their organization. In addition, an organization can tap into overseas clients seamlessly by connecting through online meetings.
Inclusive for People Unable to Travel
Online Meetings come with limitless possibilities for the attendees who need to be in a meeting but cannot travel due to travel restrictions such as financial constraints, health issues, and other reasons. Online meetings for businesses assure participation from attendees all over the world, they ensure that people don’t need to leave their comfort zones to attend meetings.
Another advantage of hosting meetings through a virtual meeting platform is that they are environmentally friendly. Not only this, it is evident that virtual meetings are way more sustainable than regular meetings that leave behind carbon footprints and tons of waste.
What are the Types of Virtual Meetings?
Here are a few types of Online Meetings for Businesses that are extremely popular:
1. Virtual Town Hall Meetings
Virtual town hall meetings are one of the most popular types of online meetings, where people belonging to an organization connect over an online meeting software. The agenda behind hosting a town hall is to bring all employees together and discuss strategies for the upcoming months and performances of the past months.
2. Virtual Annual General Meetings
Virtual Annual General Meetings are one kind of online meeting for businesses that are growing extremely popular these days. These meetings take place between an organization and its shareholders. The agenda of these meetings is to discuss strategies and evaluate the company’s performance. These online meetings bring the leadership, shareholders, investors, and all the employees of an organization together on a single platform.
3. Virtual Conclaves
Online conclaves are held amongst the top authorities of an organization. With Virtual Meeting Platforms, the members of the meetings can have real-time interaction with fellow attendees.
4. Virtual Board Meetings
Virtual Board Meetings are the formal meetings of an organization, attended by an organization’s board of directors and invited guests. These meetings are held over a period of time on Virtual Meeting Platforms. The objective of conducting these virtual meetings is to review performance, consider organizational policies, address major problems, and discuss business.
5. Virtual Conferences
Virtual conferences allow people to connect and interact with each other and have a discussion over a particular topic. With Online Conferences, speakers and attendees from all over the world can connect with each other seamlessly. Not only this, several audience engagements and networking tools that these Virtual Meeting Platforms come with make the entire experience more immersive.
6. Online Breakout Sessions
Virtual Breakout Sessions allow the attendees of a regular online conference or meeting to connect and discuss a problem based on the conference itself. Virtual Breakout Sessions can be conducted seamlessly through audience interaction and networking tools.
How Do You Facilitate a Meeting Virtually?
If you wish to facilitate a virtual meeting, here is a checklist that you need to follow to host immersive and successful online meetings.
1. Have a Clear Vision
The first step you need to take to ensure seamless execution of your virtual meeting is to have a clear vision for your online meeting. First of all, mention why you want to host an online meeting? After that, proceed with other things. For example, you should plan out the date, time, and agenda of the online meeting. Not only this, pick the online meeting solution for your online meeting.
Here are a few factors that you should plan beforehand so that the remaining procedure is a smooth sail for you.
- Have a vision of how you would wish the beginning and end of your meeting to look like.
- Curate a list of meeting etiquettes you would wish the attendees to follow throughout the virtual meeting, and share it with people you expect to show up.
- Create the meeting itinerary and event objective; share it with the attendees beforehand.
- Have clarity about how people will interact with each other; also, if there will be any breakout sessions or not.
- Along with all this, it is also advisable to be prepared for any trouble and error that might occur during the online meeting.
2. Send Invitations
After having everything planned, it’s time to move ahead with the further proceedings. Send a meeting invitation to all those who wish to show up for the online meeting. Even if it is an in-house online meeting, we recommend that you send an invitation to the employees or the members. In the meeting invitation, don’t forget to add a few things. Such as,
- Date and time of the virtual meeting.
- Virtual meeting agenda
- Online meeting itinerary
- Link to the Online Meeting Solution.
- Online meeting Do’s and Don’ts.
3. Remind the Attendees
Next is to keep reminding the attendees about the online meeting; it will remind the attendees to prepare for the online meeting. Ideally, the best time to do that is 24 hours before the meeting. You can either post reminders on your organization’s social media page, or send in some emailers. With the reminders, don’t forget to ask the attendees to go through the online meeting guidelines once before logging in.
4. Have a Quick run-through the Online Meeting Platform
It is always advisable to have a quick run-through through the virtual meeting platform before the online meeting. The rehearsal session will be like a quick check; it will help you know the loopholes of the online meeting platform, if any. Not only this, pre-meeting checks will help you get them checked in due time. In addition, on the meeting day, ensure you log in early so that you can welcome the attendees to the online meeting.
5. Get Started with the Online Meeting
Now that all your attendees are here, it’s time to kick start your online meeting. As a host, ensure you start the meeting with high energy and enthusiasm. Don’t just start the meeting with the agenda; give everyone some time to make themselves comfortable, and greet each other. You can also start off with an icebreaker, or welcome the attendees with some music.
6. Keep the Attendees Engaged
Attendee engagement is one of the most crucial factors that define the success of any online event. As the online meeting host or moderator, you need to ensure that your attendees don’t find the online meeting boring. Here are a few tips that will ensure your attendees are having a good time over the Virtual Meeting Platform:
- Keep the attendees involved all the time; ensure you address them and acknowledge their presence. Not only this, keep asking if they have any queries or concerns.
- Moreover, you can call out the attendees who didn’t get a chance to speak.
- Also, Use icebreaker questions or jokes to keep the vibes of the online meeting light.
- Host team-building activities during the online meeting.
7. Close Your Virtual Meeting Professionally
We understand virtual meetings get on your nerves, and you might feel the urge to end the meeting as soon as possible. But, we will suggest you give a closure before hitting the ‘End’ button. Thank all the attendees for their presence before ending the meeting. Not only this, you should conclude the meeting and ensure that no one has any doubt regarding anything. In addition, make sure to end the virtual meeting on a happy and cheerful note.
8. Send Follow-Up Email Immediately
Once you press the End button, quickly send the follow-up emails to all the attendees. In the follow-up mail, don’t forget to send the meeting minutes, the ‘to-do’ pointers, and other highlights of the online meeting. There are several Online Meeting Tools, like Mixhub, that provide you with the recording of the online meeting. In addition, You can attach the recording in the follow-up mail and also attach a quick survey link in the mail.
We hope this blog has helped you know what online meetings are all about. To host online meetings for your organization, get an expert online meeting platform like Mixhub, and deliver the best meeting experiences. Book your demo session now!
Virtual Meetings: Frequently Asked Questions
Virtual meetings are simply the meetings that take place on a virtual meeting platform, where the attendees connect virtually through the internet.
Online meetings come with several advantages; such as:
● They are cost and time-efficient.
● Virtual meetings ensure more attendee attendance and engagement.
● They are eco-friendly.
● Online meetings come without any geographical constraints.
Ideally, your virtual meetings should get completed within an hour. To make it more effective, and keep people engaged, you can divide your virtual meetings in a few segments of 15-20 minutes.
● Always dress-up properly; say no to pajamas.
● Always keep your camera on.
● Give everyone a fair chance to speak and participate.
● Don’t unmute yourself until asked.
● Don’t distract the speakers.
● Avoid Using your phone or multitasking during the meeting.