5 Tips for Hosting a Successful Virtual All-Hands Meeting
ow do you keep your remote employees engaged when you have an all-hands meeting? It's been a struggle for the past several years, and conventional wisdom says that having all of your employees in one room will improve engagement and alignment. Here are five tips to ensure that your next virtual all-hands meeting is truly successful and has a lasting impact on your company culture and employee engagement levels.
1_ Have Clear Objective
The first step to an efficient all-hands meeting is to have clear objectives. Decide what you want out of your all-hands, then identify any major announcements, changes or cause for celebration that need to be discussed. You can even use something like Asana, Monday or Notion to create a schedule and assign dates for each topic area so everyone knows what needs their attention when.
2_ Invite Everyone
Everyone in the company should be invited to your virtual all-hands meeting. You might be tempted to invite only specific departments or teams, but it’s better to keep an open invite and share broad company announcements equally. This keeps the team aligned to your strategy—and then ensure everyone is on board with how you’re moving forward. And it’s a great way to get more perspective and insight from your team. You never know where that next billion-dollar idea may come from!
3_ Aim for Critical Mass
When possible, it’s best to hold your virtual all-hands meeting at a set time every week or month. This ensures critical mass of participation and that people can plan ahead to accommodate their schedules. In addition, choosing consistent times will likely encourage more people to attend, improving engagement overall.
4_ Create an Open Forum
You want your virtual all-hands meeting to be as inclusive as possible. Engage the team throughout the presentation by running polls and getting feedback in chat. Encourage participation and reward those who stay actively engaged with spot prizes, like Uber Eats credits. Ask live questions in an open forum at the end of the session, but encourage everyone to submit questions in advance via your intranet, slack, email, video chat, or your preferred form of communication. A chance to prepare responses is always appreciated. Encouraging participation AND ensuring you follow up on your promise to address questions will ensure an ongoing, positive culture.
5_ Have Some Fun!
In virtual all-hands meetings, it’s even more important to keep everyone involved, engaged and having fun. Fun doesn’t have to mean you have an hour long party on skype where everyone gets super drunk and then tries to karaoke. There are many simple ways to make your virtual all hands meeting more enjoyable. Encourage people to dress up in wild themes, like May the 4th, and give away prizes for the most spirited team member. Play some music, start off with a dance party to shake off the work stress. Have a few laughs, share some funny stories from the team, but be sure to keep it positive and non-controversial.
Ready to uplevel your next all-hands meeting? Let’s chat!
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