How to Facilitate a Board Meeting Online

Online meetings for Boards continue to grow as the world becomes more aware of the benefits of virtual collaboration. This is a fantastic way to connect your members and eliminate the geographical limitations that could otherwise force members to travel to meetings. But, there are some hurdles to be overcome in the transition to this new method. Boards can increase participation in board meetings remotely by planning ahead and employing smart facilitation.

In addition to deciding the agenda of the meeting It is also important to ensure that everyone has access to the equipment they require for the call. It’s recommended to provide an online test link and login details well before the meeting, and to ask participants to turn off their microphones when not speaking, which can assist in reducing background noise and allow them to better hear the person who is speaking on the floor. It is also an excellent idea to establish a formal conversation procedure (i.e. hand-raises to get the attention of the group), and to limit multitasking, which can create confusion during the meeting.

Virtual board meetings can be a challenge to manage because it’s difficult to create the same sense of comfort as a meeting in person. There are a variety of tools that can be used to foster connection, including the use of icebreakers. Ferrazzi Greenlight, for example, has designed a number of exercises that can be run during a video conference, for instance, the “sweet and sour” check-in in which participants share the one thing for which they are grateful and one aspect with which they struggle personally or professionally. This allows for an open and vulnerable discussion that can create connections between board members.