29 Tips for Facilitators of Remote meetings

  1. Send out an invitation with the topics to be discussed, the output of the meeting, full instructions on how to connect and equipment needed.
  2. User a video conferencing tool that is familiar to everyone. If the participants need to install anything before, let them know. Beware with corporate laptops that have restrictions in installing any software.
  3. Try to share a phone number with a link
  4. User noise cancelation headphones
  5. Use a good microphone
  6. Deactivate activation by default of the camera and microphone for everyone who logs in the meeting. Let the participants share their sound and video when they feel comfortable with it.
  7. Allow everyone to share the screen (to be a resenter). If this is not possible, inform the participants in your meeting invite so they can send you the information they want to share.
  8. Be the first one to log into the conference. Some videoconferencing tools request the organizer to allow them in.
  9. If someone is late, check the requests to join the meeting regularly
  10. Be aware of the time differences. It doesn’t harm to mention the timezone on the agenda of the meeting.
  11. Share your screen, or have visual support to the meeting. It will help your audience to be connected.
  12. Prepare a sharable link with the meeting support for the participants who can’t follow the presentation. You may also include the links to any web page you’ll access.
  13. Multiple tabs open with all the pages/applications you need to
  14. In case you have various new participants — make a test a few days before to make sure they have the right setup.
  15. In case you have numerous persons — make sure the tool supports all the number of people invited. Some conferencing tools have restrictions on the number of people to log in.
  16. Ask participants to mute themselves while not talking, especially if they are in a noisy environment
  17. Takes notes during the meeting and try to update the tools after. Sometimes it takes a lot of time to update everything. Prepare, so everything goes smoothly.
  18. Do a small talk while people join — you can ask about the weather, country, family.
  19. If people are late, feel free to ping them on the chat tool you have in common, email them, call them. They might need help, forget it, etc
  20. Start on time and finish on time, educate participants to be punctual. It is a general rule, but while we work remotely, we also need a few minutes for a biological break.
  21. Confirm that everyone can hear you, see you and see your screen.
  22. Talk to everything you do. While in the same meeting room, we know what is going on, remotely we don’t. If you are thinking about an answer: say it, if you search for something: say it, if you look for solutions: say it, if you move on your chair because you aren’t comfortable: say it, if you are slow because of any reason: say it, if you look for some information on the screen: say it. It helps to let the other participants know what is going on; it helps to involved them and to keep the meeting flow.
  23. If you have a hard stop — let the audience know.
  24. If you want to go over the agreed time, ask for permission.
  25. Do not force people to turn on their cameras. If you want people to turn on their cameras, start with doing it yourself.
  26. Close all the unnecessary window
  27. put yourself in do not disturb
  28. Don’t be afraid to share the whiteboard, draw something, and then show it to the camera, be creative to be precise.
  29. Avoid presentations and encourage collaborative platforms eg, privilege One note over PowerPoint, TFS, or Jira over PowerPoint.