We are running our businesses, jobs, companies, families and friends on screen now.  My iPad is jammed with FaceTime, Microsoft Teams, Skype, Zoom, Lifesize and Webex.
After all these years I have finally become a Screenager.
As far as meetings go, I’m busy learning how to do it all – the technology, the etiquette, the preparation, the rhythm and beat, the flow and the aftermath.
There are quite a few guides / how to’s out there, so here’s mine – a mixture of my own experience – averaging six hours per day on on-screen, multi-person meetings, and a guide to virtual facilitation by Gwen Stirling-Wilkie.
1)    Remember the Six P’s (Proper Preparation Prevents Pretty Poor Performance):
·         Ensure all participants know how to use the tech.
·         Have a tech rehearsal for any live-streaming.
·         Brief the meeting purpose well in advance.  Be clear.
·         Circulate pre-reads / pre-views in advance.
2)    Make it Count:
·         Open up the call 10 minutes before start to help people settle in.
·         Start with a two – three minute check-in if you have time.
o   How are people feeling – maybe in three words,
o   What’s on peoples’ minds,
o   What’s making you feel happy.
·         Run the meeting for up to an hour.  For workshops keep them at three hours max.
·         Be more direct as a Facilitator – ensure everyone contributes and is heard.
3)    Before you check out:
·         Have everyone wrap up:
o   What did you get out of the meeting?
o   What did you want to say, but didn’t have the chance to?
o   What’s the key thing you’re going to do now?
4)    Making the most out of the meeting:
·         Be on time – five minutes early!
·         Have video on; voice on mute when not speaking.
·         Close down all other disruptive screens.
·         Be concise and clear.  Don’t ramble.
5)    Presenting your best self:
·         Raise your screen to eye-level.
·         Keep your head and shoulders visible on-screen.
·         Be in natural light – no backs to the window though.
·         Check your image out – nothing embarrassing behind you that may appear on screen.
·         Stand Up and Fight.  Look smart, focused and ‘on’.  Dress accordingly.

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Kevin Roberts

Kevin Roberts is founder of Red Rose Consulting; business leader and educator; author and speaker; adviser on marketing, creative thinking and leadership.


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