Tips For How to Make Remote Meetings More Fun
Meetings, whether they’re in person or remote, can become very dull very quickly. There’s a reason there are many memes about boring meetings, after all. But for many industries meetings are the most practical way to touch base on a project, collaborate for planning, or review progress and are simply a fact of life. So how can you make remote meetings more fun so your team gets involved and engaged rather than losing interest? Here are a few ideas for remote meetings to keep them interesting.
What Are Some Ideas for Remote Meetings?
It’s easy to assume that remote meetings are exactly the same as in-person meetings, but they’re not. Since everyone is in their own space rather than being in the same room this can actually make a very large difference for how people interact with each other. When everyone is in the same room, there’s an energy in the room that can help excite people. That same energy doesn’t always translate through in remote meetings. Without those in-person cues, or because of distractions in each person’s space you may find that even if your team is excited about a project, they may not actually feed off each other in the same way.
It’s also not as easy for things such as body language, gestures, and facial expressions to translate through remote meetings. These things are actually very important parts of communication. Even though people can see each other through their cameras, it’s not quite the same. Because of these factors, you need to think about how you can change up your remote meetings.
What Are Some Ways to Keep People Engaged in Virtual Meetings?
The first thing to do is to think about which items require a meeting and which ones could actually be an email, message app thread, thread, or simply a one-on-one phone call. The best way to avoid meeting fatigue is to avoid setting up meetings out of habit if they’re not necessary.
Next, think about length. People are typically going to be more engaged in meetings that are on-topic and focused. Have an agenda for your meeting and stick to it. If other points come up, you will need to weigh the pros and cons of talking about them during the meeting. Sometimes these points are relevant and need to be discussed. Other times, you may make a note that you need a separate meeting or email for that topic. Say as much and encourage your team to focus on the subject at hand.
Stop your meetings on time whenever possible. Even if you haven’t covered everything, don’t keep people over the initial time. Doing so can lead to frustrations, plus some people may have to log out of your meeting to log in to another one. Let people know that you still have some agenda items, but if they’re not vital, either begin an email discussion or schedule a follow-up meeting later.
Did you invite the right people? Don’t invite people who don’t need to be there, because they won’t be engaged. If you need someone there to speak to one particular agenda item, put that item at the top of the list. Reach out to that person and let them know that their item will be first on the list and that they’re free to log out of the meeting after discussing it.
How Do You Make Remote Meetings Fun?
Now that we have some of the “remote meeting best practices” out of the way let’s talk about what you can do to actually create fun meetings that keep your team interested. There are a few things you can do to make your meetings a mix of productivity and team building to help keep remote teams more connected and encourage better collaboration skills. If your team hasn’t met often before or if you have a few new people joining you, you can start with introductions and ice breakers. It may sound cliché, but this can help people get to know each other quickly. You don’t have to spend a lot of time on this activity, either—15 to 20 minutes may be all that’s necessary if your team is on the small side.
If your team does know each other, you can spend a few minutes doing check-ins. Let each person give a quick update on how they’re doing or what’s going on in their lives. This can be really good for a weekly staff meeting or other infrequent meetings that aren’t urgent.
Playing games can be a great way of adding a little fun to your meeting routine. There are a number of different options here so consider adding a fun team building meeting every month or so to give your team something to look forward to. Virtual team trivia is a great way of getting your team to learn about each other while participating in some healthy competition. Teams answer questions about different topics through a number of rounds in order to claim first place.
Another online competition option is a virtual scavenger hunt. Teams follow clues in videos, search online for specific images or links, and even take photos of items in their houses to score points and win the game.
Online escape rooms have also become very popular. Your employees will need to work together to figure out the clues and find the code that lets them escape. This can be a great way for individuals to show off their particular problem-solving skills and other talents.
Need some help implementing these fun remote team meeting ideas? That’s where BreakoutIQ comes in. We can assist you in hosting a remote trivia game, virtual escape room, online scavenger hunt, and more.
What Are the Best Virtual Team Meeting Ideas?
Now that you have some ideas for your meetings, it’s time to determine which are the best meeting ideas for remote teams for your company. Think about what your employees like and how much time you have for the activity. Also consider how often your team attends virtual meetings together. You might even poll your team and go with the activity that the majority is interested in.
These are just a few different virtual meeting ideas that could help keep your team engaged and having fun. Contact BreakoutIQ if you want to book a virtual team trivia contest, scavenger hunt, or other online activity.