words Alexa Wang
Meetings are the bane of every professional’s day. No one wants to sit in a meeting room for an hour or more, or even participate in a video call for that long, discussing numbers and trends and policies and whatever else may be on the agenda.
The good news is that there are ways to make your video conferences a bit more enjoyable for everyone, to you can eliminate the snoozers and keep everyone focused.
Here are a few tips on making your video conference calls more enjoyable overall.
Set Aside A Few Minutes For Movement
When you sit for long periods of time, it can slow down blood flow, and the less blood there is flowing to your brain, the more difficult it is to concentrate. Combine this with less-than-thrilling topics of discussion, and you’ve got the perfect recipe for a mid-afternoon nap. In order to keep your participants engaged and make the meeting a bit more fun, set aside some time for movement in your agenda.
Encourage your participants to simply get up and walk around or move their arms and legs for 1-2 minutes approximately every half-hour or so. Ideally, your meetings are under an hour in length, so you should only have to do this one or twice.
The attendees will certainly appreciate the chance to move about and get their blood flowing again, and it shows that you take an interest in their overall well-being.
Mix Things Up
Humor is a great way to mix things up and keep people engaged and your meetings fun. You can include humor in your presentations or your speaking, but the golden rule when it comes to work humor is to keep it clean.
Clean jokes are usually appreciated by everyone, but the wrong dirty or controversial joke can land you in hot water. There’s nothing wrong with including some humor in the call, as long as you’re not negatively affecting anyone else with what you’re saying.
You could also opt for a PowerPoint or other presentation instead of simply talking the entire time. Often, when we speak for extended periods of time, our voices become monotone and sound bored. This does nothing for the meeting but helps put everyone to sleep!
You could also open your conference with an inspiring video or motivational clip that reinforces the company vision. There are thousands of such clips online at sites like YouTube. A quick motivational quote or short speech might be just what someone needed that day.
Fun ice breakers are a great way to introduce new people during the meeting and start everyone off on a lighter note. Your meetings don’t have to be 110% serious in order to get anything done, and some light-hearted fun can help set people at ease and make everything run a little smoother.
Some creative ice breakers include having everyone introduce themselves with their name, position, and favorite ice cream. You could also try something like two truths and a lie, where everyone gives two truths and a lie and the participants try to guess which is the lie.
A trivia game at the onset of the meeting is another fun ice-breaker that anyone can appreciate. The questions can be simple and company-related or related to any subject you choose.
Make Your Conferences Shorter
Shorter meetings can actually be more productive, and no matter how fun you make the meeting, it’s going to wear on the participants after awhile. Most people tend to tune out after the first hour or so, so try to keep meetings under an hour if possible. If your meeting will run longer than that, let everyone know as soon as possible and give them ample opportunity to get up and move around.
Get Everyone Involved
The more people that are actively involved in your discussion, the better the meeting will be. It’s much more fun to interact with everyone in a meeting, so if you see someone who hasn’t said much, try to include them in the conversation.
Using those fun ice breakers is a good way to start, but you can also say simple things like, “Do you have any input on this?” or “What are your thoughts?” Shy people tend to hang back during video calls, but it’s important to encourage them to come out of their shell and participate for the good of the meeting itself.
Video conferencing isn’t exactly the most fun thing you can do in business, but these tips can help spice up your video meetings so no one’s falling asleep. Remember to try to get everyone in the call involved in the conversation, and if you’re having trouble reaching them, use creative ice-breakers.