How can we improve the virtual meeting experience? Just like in the physical workspace #ergonomics #humanfactors #userexperience considerations can make virtual meetings more productive for you and your team. Here’s how these considerations might look for you as a virtual meeting leader:

9 Tips for Leading Virtual Meetings

Tip #1: Communicate Details of the Virtual Platform

There are a number of platforms available and in use. Communicate the platform being used and any pertinent information related to downloads, drivers, browser, apps prior to the meeting if possible. 


Tip #2: Set Virtual Meeting Settings

You are the meeting leader, set the meeting so attendees are on mute, enable or disable video and record. Consider the elements that work best for your meeting, communicate settings in the invite, and create your optimal virtual environment when you’re ready to meet.


Tip # 3: Customize Your Virtual Meeting Time

Set your meeting for five to ten minutes in your calendar invite. Customize your meeting invite to allow for a brief preparation period. This might mean the invite hits the calendar at five minutes to the hour with the intent to start on the hour. Alternatively, the meeting invite might hit the calendar on the hour with the intention to start at five minutes past the hour mark. In either case, you are communicating a change in work activity and allowing time for your team to prepare for your meeting.


Tip #4: Give Guidelines for Video Background Options

For a deeper dive into #userexperience and #humanfactors consider team members who may not have a designated home work space. These members may be reluctant to appear on camera due to their personal perceptions. If your organization is expecting or using video participation, consider a platform that allows for background imaging during your video feed. Communicate how to set up your designated video feature and guidelines for use prior to the meeting. You can always schedule a Zoom meeting with #exponentehf to see how our team uses this feature.


Tip #5: Communicate How to Get Technical Assistance

Usually, the organization holding the meeting does not control the meeting platform. Technical support for platform access and interaction is largely held within the platform. Provide the platform technical support information and instructions for contact in the meeting invite so your team can be prepared for your virtual meeting.


Tip #6: Communicate the Purpose of Your Virtual Meeting

This may be a new way to connect and work for much of your team. What is the purpose of your virtual meeting today? Is it connection, work or both? How formal is your video meeting and what dress code is expected? Communicating your expectations will help users understand the virtual system.      


Tip #7: When You Should Utilize Chat Function in a Virtual Meeting

If your virtual meeting is designed for connection, you may want to invite your team to utilize the chat function for connecting exchanges. This might mean chat conversations are encouraged to have a ‘break room’ dialog: “Hi, checking in from St. Louis!” “Hey, good to see you here, how are the kids?” Communicate chat expectations up front in your virtual meeting invite, such as the chat is open to content specific questions at a designated time.


Tip #8: Create a ‘Virtual Attendee Etiquette Guide’

Your virtual etiquette guide should communicate expectations around meeting participation. For example, if you have a small, standing staff meeting you could communicate that due to the purpose of connecting, team members should try to connect with video and chat informally. If your meeting is more formal, communication video will be disabled, all questions should be kept concise and be asked during the designated Q and A session at the end of the presentation.


Tip #9: Get Feedback of System Users during Post Virtual Meeting

One of the keys to good #ergonomics is to get the feedback of system users. A poll of meeting design, system performance, along with platform based metrics, will give information on performance.  Your organization will need to determine what data is most helpful in directing your next steps including:


  • Ease of use to enter meeting
  • Sound and video quality
  • Poll ease of use of features such as shared screens, chat, whiteboard 
  • Length of time to enter meeting
  • Computer audio versus telephone audio


The common factor in each of these is communication with your end user. Let us know what YOU are doing at #exponentehf.