While I know that most of us have grown weary with online meetings right now (and are even beginning to have some in person!), depending upon your meeting purpose, they can still help us work together in similar ways to being in the same room. One of the aspects that helps the most with a productive online meeting is sharing your screen! Join me this week as I highlight 3 reasons it makes sense to share your screen.
As we have experienced for more than two years, the number of distractions in online meetings can be overwhelming. If we are relying on folks to remember why we are meeting and don’t have them looking at the same document together, they can easily get distracted and sidetracked from the original meeting purpose or from the topic being discussed. If you want to really focus on conversation around a topic and see one another well, try this process: 1. Share your screen. 2. Stop sharing for discussion and encourage folks to show their video 3. Share again to continue progress. Showing something on a screen is also helpful for in-person meetings. As I am currently planning an in-person meeting for next month, we are including a combination of verbal instructions and instructions posted on the screen above us. By using multiple methods of communication, we are able to help our participants (and ourselves!) focus on the topic being discussed.
While some folks can be really uncomfortable taking notes “live,” it helps the conversation move forward and ensure that the key decisions and action items are seen and supported by the group. Note-taking in real time also helps organize the notes so that you can send them out quickly after the meeting supporting accountability. If you utilize the method described above, you can stop sharing during some of the discussion, have someone continue to take notes (bullet points are sufficient) and then share again to “check-in” with the group to ensure that you understood and accurately reflected the discussion and decisions.
When we share our screen and ask questions utilizing what is on the screen,participants can engage in the meeting discussion more actively. Our online meeting platforms also allow for additional “screen sharing” options and apps. For instance, you can include polls, utilize the chat feature and apps that create word clouds (such as Mentimeter). Remember to begin with clarity on your meeting purpose and let that influence how to best utilize your shared screen methods. Also, be sure to include multiple team members to help you with implementing the screen sharing and set clear expectations for participation. By providing something for your meeting attendees to see during the meeting (as long as it isn’t constant powerpoint presentations with only one person talking..), you are creating opportunities to promote engagement.
So what about you? How have you found sharing your screen helpful? Or when has sharing your screen been challenging?
As you plan your next online meeting, check out my free resource, How to Lead Your Best Online Meeting Yet