Leading online meetings

Published on November 30, 2023   27 min

Other Talks in the Series: Future Work Now

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Hello. Thank you for joining me. My name is Pilar Orti, and I'm the Director of Virtual not Distant, where I help managers and their teams embrace online collaboration practices. I'm also the host of the 21st Century Work Life Podcast, where we talk about online collaboration and leading remote teams. I'm the author of the book "Online Meetings that Matter".
I have been helping managers and their remote teams embrace online collaboration since 2016. I have to tell you that back then, online meetings were very different. Even in fully remote teams, online meetings didn't take up much time. Some of them were better than others, and the technology then made some of them painful, but there weren't that many of them. However, as technology has advanced and the online experience has become better, and most people now know how to have a video meeting online, they have become very popular.
In this talk, we're going to look at Why do remote teams have meetings? What to consider when we're thinking about calling a meeting? The role of the team leader, manager, or meeting host in making meetings work. What needs to happen before a meeting? What we should consider during a meeting and what should happen after a meeting? I'm going to be looking at meetings in general, even though there are many different types of meetings. I know some sectors and methodologies have specific kinds of meetings too. Hopefully, there will be a range of practices here that you can incorporate into any kind of meeting.
Meetings should not be the only form of communication in remote teams, but even if we also adopt asynchronous communication, which doesn't happen in real-time, meetings will play an important part in collaborations. Meetings allow us to have thorough discussions, to check in on the spot if we're understanding each other, and they allow us to get the full body of somebody's message. At a human level, I've noticed that many things happen in meetings that help us feel connected to each other. We connect through the work by sharing our tasks and our work. We can share our progress. We can share what we've been learning. Sometimes, we share our mistakes, our discoveries, our challenges, our creativity. If you start to listen carefully, you can hear people sharing their values, their personal context, and even their personal histories. We can share part of our personality and we might even be sharing a sense of humor. You can see that meetings are an important part of the workplace, and in some teams, they are more important than others. Meetings will play a different function in teamwork depending on the nature of each team.