Rules for Productive Hybrid Meetings - Docket

Rules for Productive Hybrid Meetings

Hybrid meetings involve participants from an office setting and others who call in from remote locations–typically with a video conferencing solution like Zoom or Google Meet. While hybrid workplaces provide the best of both office culture and work-from-home focus, collaboration in hybrid environments includes challenges from both systems.

Challenges such as an uneven playing field between team members, communication issues across various mediums, undefined policies, and cultural gaps can lead to confusion and frustration for the unprepared.

Recently, Eric Yuan, CEO of Zoom, shared some of his top tips for remote and hybrid workers regarding long hours on video conferencing.

How to hold the best hybrid meeting

At Docket, we’re committed to finding the best operational tips for remote and hybrid teams. Here are some of our top tips gathered from decades of experience working with teams spread out around the globe. Try these ground rules for meetings.

Ground rules for before any meeting

  • When creating the meeting invitation or booking time on a calendar, consider the meeting goal first. If the meeting process doesn’t have a clear goal, discuss asynchronously with key stakeholders. Every meeting must have a purpose!
  • Set up all technology and test before starting, regardless of location. If technical issues persist beyond 10 minutes, reschedule the meeting.
  • All attendees must be located in a suitable environment with minimal distractions and a quiet atmosphere.
  • Avoid passive meeting attendance. Only team members who will be asked to contribute will be asked to attend. A recording of the meeting can be made available to other team members if necessary.
  • A meeting agenda is to be created and shared with the team before the meeting and any reports or attachments. (Don’t know where to start? Try one of our free meeting agenda templates!) Everyone is expected to review the agenda and materials before the meeting. Asynchronous questions are welcome.

Ground rules for meetings

  • Cameras should be on at all times unless otherwise agreed upon with everyone else.
  • Muting yourself is advisable. Team members will unmute to ask a question, offer constructive feedback, or contribute to the discussion.
  • When set, teams will follow the time allotment for each topic to keep the meeting moving and on time. If more time is needed, follow up as necessary.
  • Everyone is expected to take notes. These meeting notes should be shared at the end or shortly following the meeting for clarity and accountability.
  • The facilitator should save the last few minutes of the meeting for summary and action item assignment. Everyone should be clear on who will be responsible for each follow-up as well as any necessary timelines or deadlines.

What to do after every meeting

  • Compile meeting notes. Highlight decisions, next steps, their due dates, and who is responsible for seeing them through.
  • The meeting owner is responsible for sharing the meeting recap shortly following the meeting. Forward these notes to stakeholders who were not present at the meeting.
  • Avoid carrying the discussion out of the room once the meeting has ended. Doing so creates knowledge gaps and discourages open collaboration.
  • If any team member has questions about the meeting once it has been completed, they should first check the meeting recap, which has been saved in a shared folder, drive, or system.

Rules for Meetings

When expectations for productive meetings are shared with the team, the onus is on everyone to do their part to make the meeting awesome. Meandering and unproductive meetings can be avoided with small adjustments to policy and procedure, and the best way to get started is to get buy-in from the team.

About the Author

Heather Hansson

Heather is VP of Product and Chief of Staff at Docket. She enjoys leading cross-functional teams to work together on vision, strategy, and implementing solutions that help people work and live better. When she isn’t helping rid the world of wasteful meetings with Docket, Heather likes to run, take violin lessons with her son, and spend time with her family.

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