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Zoom in Style: 5 Tips to Liven Up Your Virtual Meetings
Zoom in Style: 5 Tips to Liven Up Your Virtual Meetings
In this time where the pandemic has hit almost all countries in the world, cities, and communities have gone into lockdown and have led people to do most of their daily activities from home.
With this, the usual face-to-face engagements, including conferences or meetings, have transitioned into online meetups. Video call software programs such as Zoom, Google Meeting, and Skype, among others, have become the go-to avenues for enabling virtual meetings for work and school.
However, in the light of this “new normal,” it is not easy to be facing a screen the whole day. Things eventually feel mundane and repetitive, and the lack of physical human interaction might lead you to digital burnout. Here are some tips to help you liven up your virtual meetings and make your conferences a little more interesting:
Hire a third party host/comedian
The repetitive Zoom meetings might get too boring in the long run and might make your employees or colleagues mute their microphones, turn off their cameras, and plop back into bed. You might want to save the day by cracking up a few old jokes of your own, but this might not be a good idea for the people in the online conference room.
Why not save all that energy and effort, and hire a professional emcee or comedian to shake things up? Hiring a third person into the meeting might sprinkle some pizazz into the conversation. You can hire top comedians to bring the party into the virtual room or collaborate with an emcee to make introductions a little bit more exciting.
Organize games or icebreakers
Remember, during retreats or conferences, there would be icebreakers or gimmicks brought at the start of the program by your counselor or host? This brings so much energy at the beginning of every meeting or seminar, and you can still bring this into your virtual meeting.
Games such as charades or Pictionary could still be done within your online conference room, as these would only require the players to use what they already have (their hands, paper, and pen, or even the Whiteboard feature on your Zoom account).
You can also set up a mini-competition by making your colleagues or staff by encouraging them to get creative. In line with the Covid protocols of urging people to wear a face mask or shield, you can set up a contest in decorating or jazzing up their own. This will help in utilizing social distancing measures and bring a little fun and bring out their inner artist.
Encourage Collaborative Presentations
Since most companies have opted for a work-from-home setup, it has limited colleagues to come face to face with each other, thus limiting interaction to emails or chatbot conversations. More often than not, the feeling of isolation may lead to low work proficiency and productivity.
To bring colleagues or employees together, it would be good to encourage collaborative presentation and demos and let your staff or colleagues take reign of the meeting every once in a while. Not only would this increase participation and teamwork, but this can also highlight the responsibility of your staff or coworkers to be present in your meetings.
Increase Work Engagement by Setting Up a Theme
Bringing up gimmicks during the usual business meetings might feel like going over-the-top, but one can never get too cheesy when it comes to online discussions. Getting your colleagues or workers to be engaged in the conversation might need you to start thinking of something to do out of the box.
Setting up a theme can make your partners or coworkers feel excited to enter the online meeting and feel more engaged and involved. You can pitch in a “Wear a Funky Sweater to Meeting Day” or set up a video conference call wherein you can have your furry little pets sit beside you throughout the whole thing.
Not only will this set an expectation from those who will be joining the meeting, but it will also let them feel that things don’t have to be boring and exhaustingly routinary.
Assign Specific Tasks for Those Who Will Join the Meeting
Have you ever gone into a meeting and wonder what in the world you are supposed to do while being in it? This is undoubtedly a dilemma of most people who have engaged in virtual meetings, being very well into almost nine months of lockdown.
As these online conferences have become a norm, some have stepped back and just become onlookers, or what you can call “floaters” during meetings. These are the people who would only turn on their cameras and microphones to give a resonating “yes,” or even go as far as just giving a thumbs up in the chat box.
To prevent these floaters from idly just standing by and probably doing anything else but listen to whatever is discussed in the meeting, it is excellent to start the engagement by assigning specific tasks to every member who is present online.
These tasks need not be complicated - you can assign someone to take the minutes of the meeting, another one can be a timer to keep track of the schedule, or you can have someone who you can jokingly assign as a “meeting jester” who can throw in knock-knock jokes every once in a while.
As you go along with the work-from-home setup, and virtual meetings will become part of the new norm, online interaction needs not to be stale and boring. Following these tips, having your online meetings would bring life and strengthen bonds within your team, and maintain the vigor and interest to become productive and efficient at work.