13 Do's and Don'ts of Proper Online Meeting Etiquette

With the increase of virtual meetings, having the right etiquette for video calls is essential. To ensure that your online meetings are professional and productive, here is a list of 13 dos and don'ts for proper online meeting etiquette.

13 Do's and Don'ts of Proper Online Meeting Etiquette

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Do mute yourself when not speaking.

When you are on a call with multiple people, it is essential that you mute yourself when not speaking out loud. This will prevent background noise from being inadvertently transmitted to the other participants, which can disrupt and interfere with the flow of conversation. It’s also good etiquette to remind other participants that they should do the same.

Keeping your microphone off can also help to ensure that only one person talks at a time. Nobody wants to be talking over each other on an online meeting, and keeping the microphone off until it is your turn makes it much easier for people to communicate smoothly without interruption. In addition, some microphones can pick up typing noise, so if you are copying notes into the document while others are speaking, make sure to mute yourself in between turns. Following this etiquette helps ensure a productive and enjoyable conversation for everyone involved.

Do mute yourself when not speaking.

It’s also a good idea to advise any attendees to put their phones on silent, and remind them not to type, eat or drink while others are speaking. Also make sure everyone knows that should there be any errors on the slides their colleagues are presenting, they should avoid criticisms during a meeting and wait until after it has ended to discuss these points. Following proper etiquette in an online meeting will make the conversation smoother, allowing you and your team to get more out of the session.

One of the most important pieces of etiquette to remember during an online meeting is that everyone should mute their microphones when they’re not speaking. This simple task can help eliminate background noise which can quickly and easily become distracting while someone else is talking. Not only that, but it also prevents any accidental overlap in conversation, enabling everyone to communicate more clearly. Remind all attendees at the start of the meeting to have their microphone on mute when they're not talking.

Don’tinvade anyone’s privacy.

Respect the privacy of each person participating in the meeting. If confidential matters are being discussed, wait until all participants have agreed to proceed before giving any access to outside third parties. Make sure that you do not share the details of the meeting with anyone who is not on the call without explicit permission from everyone involved. Avoid recording or taking screenshots without prior consent as well.

Don’tinvade anyone’s privacy.

During online meetings, maintain a professional tone and be considerate of all participants. Pay attention to when other people are speaking and, if you have something to say, wait until they’ve finished before making your point. Avoid talking over others or interrupting them as it can make them feel disrespected or unheard. Respect the moderator’s authority during the meeting and try not to talk too much as this also takes away from others who may have something to contribute as well. Lastly, avoid multitasking unless it's explicitly mentioned at the start of the meeting that it's permissible.

One of the most important rules in online meetings is to not invade anyone’s privacy. Don’t ask too personal questions, and resist the urge to pry into someone else’s private life. You should never discuss confidential or sensitive topics with colleagues outside of the meeting space, and should always be aware that there are limits on what kind of information can be shared publicly. Lastly, remember to be respectful of everyone’s time. Respond to emails or messages promptly, listen closely when others are speaking, avoid long-winded responses, and try to stay focused on the task at hand.

When it comes to online meetings, one of the most important things to remember is that it’s still a professional setting, and you behave professionally at all times. This means, being on time for calls, respecting other people’s privacy, and following the rules set forth by the meeting facilitator. It also means refraining from inappropriate comments or jokes that can disrupt the spirit of a meeting or make others feel uncomfortable. Respect everyone’s time, ideas and opinions during online meetings, remain focused on topics related to the purpose of the meeting, avoid idle chit-chat about personal items and matters unrelated to the topic of discussion. The key takeaway is to always be mindful of your words and actions in an online environment.

Do make a plan and stick to it.

In order to ensure the smooth running of an online meeting, planning ahead is key. Set an agenda with points to cover and allocate specific people to speak on certain topics if necessary. It’s also a good idea to decide how long the meeting should last so that you can keep track of time. Once all of this is done, stick to it! This helps guarantee all of the important points will be covered and no one will become distracted during the meeting – it’s easy enough in a remote setting!

Do make a plan and stick to it.

Let everyone in your group know when the meeting will take place What topics will be discussed? Decide if there is any important information that all participants should have ready before the commencement of the meeting. If a time limit is necessary, let everyone know ahead of time – that way things can get done efficiently and no one feels as if they are being rushed. This also ensures that the whole process remains organized and efficient for all involved!

Knowing the agenda of a meeting and when it will take place keeps everyone connected and on the same page; no one is left behind or out of the loop. Additionally, ensuring everyone is aware of their responsibilities before hand means that you can avoid awkward situations during the call as no one comes unprepared. Additionally, having a plan lets everyone know how long they need to be available for, preparing them mentally to stay engaged during the entire meeting – no feelings of being overwhelmed or overwhelming others!

One of the best habits to get in to is having a structure for your meeting and reporting. Have a decision making process, plan when it comes time to respond- doing so will increase productivity and allow everyone to stay focused. Also, try to schedule updates throughout the call- this gives more people an opportunity to speak up and ask questions or add points to the discussion. Doing these two things can help keep online meetings organized, on track, and efficient!

Don’t interrupt or talk over others

While it’s important to weigh in and make sure you are giving your opinions during meetings, it’s just as important to remember that everyone has their own views and should be given the opportunity to express them. Even if certain topics take longer than expected to discuss, don’t try to rush the conversation or talk over those who are speaking. Let conversations flow organically and don't interrupt when another participant is talking – this can lead to a much more efficient online meeting!

Just like in a face-to-face meeting, make sure that you wait for your turn to speak during online meetings. It’s also important to keep in mind that it can be harder to get a word in during virtual meetings due to lags and poor connections, so wait until everyone else is finished speaking before jumping in with your own thoughts. Ensuring that everyone has the chance to share their ideas and make positive contributions will help create an open dialogue that leads to better conversation and more effective decision making.

If you do need to interject and provide context during a meeting, be sure to start off by asking everyone else if it’s okay for you to jump in. This shows respect for everyone else’s time and helps generate a positive atmosphere where all members can feel comfortable speaking up. Furthermore, make sure that you’re always listening actively and not just passively counting down the minutes until it's your turn to speak again. By truly listening to what others have to say, you’ll gain valuable insight into their ideas which will help facilitate better conversation, stronger collaboration, and ultimately improved meeting outcomes.

Additionally, ensure that you’re not talking over or otherwise interrupting colleagues. This can be particularly tricky in online meetings where there is often a noticeable lag in responses or people’s comments may get jumbled together. As such, it’s important to always pause and allow enough time for everyone else to respond before moving on. If a colleague has spoken up, but no one has had the chance to reply yet, take note and come back to them later on in the conversation. This will help keep the meeting flowing more smoothly and make sure no one gets left behind as topics progress.

Additionally, don’t forget to be mindful of background noise. Though we are now in an age where everyone is often having to juggle work and home life at the same time, it’s still important to have a professional demeanor. If possible, try and make as little noise as possible and be sure that any noisy activities occurring in the background are not disrupting anyone else's ability to concentrate or hear what is being said. Make sure you check your audio settings, too: no one wants to hear you typing away during a conference call!

Do remember to stay professional throughout the meeting.

Do remember to stay professional throughout the meeting.

No matter how casual the video call may seem, you should always strive to remain professional. At all times, keep any off-topic conversations or sidetracking to a minimum and stick to the agenda at hand. Try to avoid unnecessary distractions like muting your microphone if children or pets are running around in the background, and remember that whatever you say is often taken more seriously when you’re meeting virtually as opposed to in person.

During the meeting, be mindful of you behavior, language and etiquette that may diverge from typical business meetings. If you want to make sure everyone is paying attention or that someone has finished speaking, mute the other people on the call while one person talks if they need to elaborate on something. Also take into consideration that when people type in a chat room mid-meeting, often it can be distracting and can derail the conversation, so think carefully before writing anything down. As always, maintain a polite and respectful attitude regardless of how others may conduct themselves online. Do your best to stay focused, refrain from conversations that are unrelated to work or straying too far off topic in order to ensure an effective meeting.

Furthermore, it is important to remember that even though you may not always be able to see everyone’s body language in an online meeting, your words and behavior still has impact. Therefore make sure not to get too caught up in the conversation or reacting quickly without thinking as this can be perceived as unprofessional by others. It’s good practice to pause before voicing an opinion and take a few seconds to think things through before speaking. Additionally, if you find yourself having a dialogue with someone during the chat function of an online meeting, make sure that other participants have the opportunity to jump in and join the conversation if they have something relevant they'd like to contribute. Remember that while conversations may occur within people on the call, there is still one main conversation happening with the group at large. Maintaining etiquette during online meetings helps maximize productivity and keeps them running smoothly for all parties involved.

Along with staying professional and not dominating the conversation, it is also important to ensure that participants maintain their focus and attention during an online meeting. This can be done by muting devices when entering a meeting, refraining from side conversations, making sure backgrounds are uncluttered and organized as much as possible, and not multitasking during meetings. If you’re sharing a presentation or video with the entire group, make sure all relevant content has been reviewed beforehand, so it runs smoothly during the call. Taking time beforehand to prepare for each meeting will allow sessions to run more efficiently and ensures everyone’s time won’t be wasted trying to catch up with missed information.

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