Tips for virtual meetings:
- Treat it like a normal meeting: Whilst it may feel different, try to run it like a normal meeting. Bringing a cup of tea to them is fine!
- Have an agenda/structure/purpose: Keep focused, flexible and ensure everyone is clear on the purpose of the meeting and what you need out of it. It’s also good to have regular video calls with the simple intention of checking in on each other too!
- Have a lead/chair: Having someone to lead the meeting enables you to keep focus and ensure that everyone has a voice and can contribute equally.
- Encourage inclusive conversation: It may feel strange at first, and that’s ok. It’s even harder if you just use audio, as you can’t see each other. Remember, we communicate mostly through our body language, so try and use video calls where you can. You may need to exert extra effort to talk/engage in the virtual meeting at first if this is not something you are used to. If you notice a colleague is a little quieter than usual, feel free to check-in and what they can contribute.
- Share documents: Most video chat software enables you to share screens and/or share documents. This enables you to visually work on things together and brings focus to your meeting.
- Size of group: Adapt your agenda depending on the size of the group. For example, 1-to-1 and small groups are likely to be able to have more focused and exploratory discussions. However, larger groups are better suited to giving information. For very large information giving meetings, you may want to disable voice conversations and use chat boxes for comments, as it can be difficult to manage too many voices at once.
- Information governance: In the current circumstances, it is perceived that it could be more harmful to the wellbeing of others if we do not share health and care information, than the associated risk of sharing it. Therefore, the use of chat apps to share information responsibly is seen as something essential. However, you must consider good information governance when sharing data as a team. To view the national guidance visit COVID-19 Information Governance advice for health and care professionals.
- Explore Software and Apps: There are many messaging and video calling apps available to help your team to stay connected. Your organisation will likely have its own preferences of software to enable you to do this. Remember to follow good information governance and if you are unsure on what’s best to use, always check with your IT department.