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9 min read

Strategies for Virtual Meeting Scheduling: Streamline Your Schedule

Why is it important to have a streamlined strategy for virtual meeting schedules

Virtual meetings might be more convenient, but they still require a bit of planning and structure to conduct successfully. There is always room for improvement so consider being mindful of people’s schedules and make sure to respect people ‘s time and be punctual when engaging with people via online calls. 

After the pandemic disrupted almost everything and swiftly ushered in new ways of going about our daily activities, we were left with a world that felt new and processes that felt alien. Whereas virtual meetings and appointments were often last resorts or exclusively used in global scenarios that required urgent attention, it is now the absolute norm. 

Streamline virtual meeting scheduling 

Virtual meetings run the gamut from well-organized information sharing sessions to absolute wastes of time. Webinars, both free and premium, flood the space and there is the sense that a lot of the virtual engagements that are being presented are adding to the noise of digital communication instead of reducing it. 

Let’s take a look at why virtual meetings are a vast improvement and how we can improve our approach to create engaging appointments for people the world over, in the comfort of their own homes. 

Why online or virtual meetings are a superior way of interacting

Virtual Meetings Create Opportunities for Global Collaboration 

We underestimate the power of being able to tap into resources beyond your immediate geographic vicinity when it is truly a game changing facet of our daily lives. Before virtual meetings became the de facto choice for most appointments, you really only had your own pool to draw from when looking at stakeholders and professionals to help guide you and your project along. 

Now, if you need a highly specialized skill or subject matter expertise, you need only consult a digital space or a virtual network to get it. The world has never been more at your fingertips and the unprecedented levels of access we currently have is nothing short of amazing. 

Allows Mindfulness of Each Other’s Schedules in Virtual Meetings 

When thinking of the advent of digital scheduling and booking links, referring back to the ludicrously time-consuming nature of the dreaded back-and-forth seems dated. If you think about it, however, it is nothing short of insane that we used to spend so much time trying to find a time to schedule appointments

Now, we have access to this information in a much more open and respectful way, allowing us to find times and book slots without infringing on someone’s already busy schedule or coming across as an imposition from the jump. 

Virtual Meetings Reduce Carbon Emissions and Redundant Travel 

There is simply no denying that the working world going virtual has great benefits for our carbon emissions and overall pollution-intensive activities. By eliminating the need for commuting and redundant travel, virtual meetings and remote work reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions generated by transportation. 

Additionally, virtual meetings eliminate the need for paper-based communication, reducing the consumption of paper and other office supplies. With virtual meetings, employees can collaborate with colleagues and clients from anywhere, reducing the need for business travel, which is a significant contributor to carbon emissions. 

Ultimately, virtual meetings and remote work provide a more sustainable and eco-friendly alternative to traditional modes of business communication and operations, contributing to the overall de escalation of some of the more egregious pollutants we currently face. 

How to improve your virtual meeting strategies

It’s safe to say that the widespread adoption of virtual engagements, meetings and remote work is one of the most positive things to happen to the working world and we don’t see any reason that should change in the coming years. Let’s take a look at some ways we can permanently improve how we set up engagements and how we deal with them as they arise:

Set outcomes for your virtual meetings 

Setting meeting outcomes is crucial to the success of any meeting, whether it is a business meeting, team meeting, or any other type of gathering. It helps to provide focus, direction, and purpose for the meeting, and ensures that everyone involved is on the same page. Without clear outcomes, meetings can quickly become aimless and unproductive, leading to frustration and wasted time. 

Setting meeting outcomes also allows participants to prepare beforehand, which can lead to more meaningful contributions and a more productive discussion. It also helps to ensure that everyone understands the purpose of the meeting, and what is expected of them.

By setting clear meeting outcomes, participants can work towards a common goal and can leave the meeting feeling more accomplished and motivated to take the necessary actions to achieve the desired results. Overall, setting meeting outcomes is an essential step towards ensuring that meetings are productive, efficient, and have a clear purpose.

Track your productivity in virtual meetings 

Tracking productivity in virtual meetings is crucial to assess their effectiveness and ensure that they are achieving the desired outcomes. By measuring productivity, you can identify areas where the meeting can be improved, whether it is in terms of time management, participation, or decision-making. This information can then be used to make necessary adjustments, which can help to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of future meetings.

Additionally, tracking productivity can provide valuable feedback to virtual meeting organizers, helping them to improve their planning and facilitation skills. 

It can also help participants to identify areas where they can improve their own contributions to the meeting. By tracking productivity, you can also determine whether the virtual meeting was worth the time and resources invested in it, which can help to justify its value to stakeholders.

Ultimately, tracking productivity in meetings can lead to more productive and efficient virtual meetings, helping to save time, reduce costs, and achieve better outcomes.

Outline your internal approach and virtual meeting culture 

Outlining virtual meetings is essential to help maintain participants' attention spans and ensure that meetings stay focused and on track. Without a clear outline, virtual meetings can quickly become disorganized, meandering, and difficult to follow.
This can cause participants to lose focus and become disengaged, leading to a less productive online meeting.

A well-designed meeting outline can help to keep the remote meeting on track, ensuring that important topics are covered and that time is used effectively.
By breaking the meeting into smaller, more manageable sections, participants can focus their attention on specific topics, making it easier to retain information and engage in meaningful discussions.

Additionally, a meeting outline can provide a visual reference for participants, making it easier to follow along and stay engaged.

Then, defining your organization's approach to online meetings is crucial to ensure that meetings are productive, efficient, and align with the organization's goals and values. By establishing a clear approach to virtual meetings, you can ensure that everyone in the organization understands the expectations and guidelines for conducting meetings. This can include defining the purpose of meetings, setting clear agendas, establishing meeting roles, and outlining communication expectations.

Defining your meeting culture is also essential to establish a positive and productive meeting environment. This can include encouraging participation, promoting respectful communication, and fostering a culture of accountability and action.
A well-defined online meeting culture can help to build trust and collaboration among team members, leading to more productive virtual meetings and better outcomes.

Take time to prepare adequately for your online meetings 

Being prepared for virtual meetings and reading important information beforehand is essential to ensure that meetings are productive and efficient. By reviewing relevant information and preparing for the meeting, participants can engage more effectively and make meaningful contributions to the discussion.

This includes reviewing the agenda, any pre-meeting materials, and other relevant information that may be relevant to the discussion. It is also important to come prepared with any necessary materials or tools, such as presentation slides or notes.
Being prepared for the remote meeting demonstrates a commitment to the meeting's goals and objectives, and helps to establish a positive and productive online meeting culture.

Starting off prepared can help to reduce the time and resources required for the virtual meeting, as participants will have a better understanding of the topics at hand and can engage in a more focused and efficient discussion.

Nail your follow-up procedures after virtual or remote meetings 

Following up adequately after virtual meetings is essential to ensure that the outcomes of the meeting are understood, agreed upon, and acted upon. This is especially true when they’re critical for a project’s progression.

Without adequate follow-up after meetings, important decisions made in the meeting may be forgotten or misunderstood, leading to confusion and delays in achieving the intended outcomes. Adequate follow-up can include documenting the decisions made, assigning action items, and setting deadlines for completion.

It is also important to ensure that all participants are aware of the follow-up actions and their responsibilities in completing them. Following up after critical and intense virtual meetings helps to ensure that everyone is on the same page and that the necessary actions are taken to achieve the intended outcomes.

It also helps to establish accountability and transparency, ensuring that the organization's goals and objectives are being met.

As you can see, having strategies for successful meetings is crucial to ensure that those meetings are productive, efficient, and engaging. Without a clear strategy, virtual meetings can become disorganized, unfocused, and difficult to follow.

Virtual meeting strategies 

Strategies for virtual meetings can include setting clear objectives, defining roles and responsibilities, using technology effectively, and establishing communication norms. By having a strategy in place, virtual meetings can be more engaging and effective, promoting participation and collaboration among attendees.

Virtual meeting strategies can also help to save time and resources by ensuring that meetings are focused and efficient, and that important topics are covered. Additionally, having a strategy in place can help to build trust and accountability among team members, leading to better outcomes and a more positive online meeting culture.

If you’re looking for ways to streamline your virtual meetings and create scheduling infrastructure that can positively benefit the way you and your team engage with people, have a look at some of OnceHub’s features to get you started.