Virtual meetings are here to stay, even in a post-pandemic world, as people get more used to working from home. While this will undoubtedly result in a more inclusive workforce, we need to ensure that virtual or mixed teams remain high on energy in pursuing business goals.
A key management challenge during these times is to decide how you energize a Zoom meeting. Before we answer this question, we need to answer a more fundamental question:
Why do we need to energize virtual teams over Zoom?
Virtual teams and Zoom meetings have enabled us to deliver results during the pandemic in the most trying of times. There is no denying this fact.
However, it is also true that participants of virtual teams lose a personal touch to a faceless voice over their device. Often, team members cannot empathize with one another and may not form a cohesive bond to focus the team’s energy towards a common goal.
Building positive energy in virtual team meetings can raise the teams’ morale and add the human touch. In addition, this approach can drive teams towards their objectives as a cohesive unit.
With this background, now we need to find an answer to the following question:
How do you energize a Zoom meeting?
Here are seven ways to energize a Zoom meeting:
- Start with an icebreaker for each session.
- Switch on video for the meetings.
- Organize team games for virtual teams and individual competitions.
- Celebrate festivals or special occasions for the team.
- Organize monthly coffee talks with the felicitation of achievers.
- Invite team members to showcase their expertise or hobbies.
- Declare meetings with fun-based themes.
Now let us look at each of these ways to energize a Zoom meeting in detail:
1. Icebreakers for a Zoom meeting
Icebreakers are critical for virtual team meetings over Zoom since this can energize a team at the beginning of a meeting. It can also increase the engagement of the participants and help them familiarize themselves with the other participants. So we need to understand what is a good icebreaker for a Zoom meeting.
While choosing an icebreaker, we must ensure that all participants are comfortable with the idea. Further, we need to select an icebreaker appropriate for the team’s size in the meeting and the level of familiarity between them. We also need to consider other factors like demographics and the seniority of participants to ensure that the icebreaker is a success.
Here are some excellent ideas for icebreakers games for Zoom meetings:
1. Round-robin random questions: This could involve random questions that the participants can choose through a lucky draw. This idea is an excellent zoom icebreaker for large groups. Some sample questions could be as follows:
- What is your favorite vacation destination?
- What is your favorite cuisine?
- What is your favorite film?
- What is your favorite fun activity?
- Who is your favorite actor?
- What is your birthplace well known for?
- What is your favorite animal, and why?
- Tell a fun fact about yourself.
- What reading material would you recommend for others on the team?
- What do you want in your remote workplace the most?
- How will you celebrate the end of the pandemic?
2. Play dumb charades as a guessing game to identify a famous person or the name of a movie.
3. Share a picture-based clue about the company or something related to the team.
4. Introduce your pet to the group.
5. Introduce your family members or any interesting thing that you want to show.
6. Guessing game about the person who will give some clues about themselves.
These icebreakers help build camaraderie. Further, icebreakers help increase engagement and focus for the team members in a Zoom call.
2. Switch on video for the meetings
Many Zoom meetings fail to energize participants since it seems like they are speaking to faceless voices on the call.
While it may not be possible to switch on the video all the time, we recommend that participants switch on the video so that others can see their facial expressions as well. If participants can see the facial expressions, it often helps them be more alert and empathize with others in a Zoom call.
A lot of communication on Zoom is non-verbal, and video is an excellent medium to express participants’ emotions. A simple act of switching on the video can build more trust and create more engaged and energized teams.
3. Organize team games for virtual teams and individual competitions
Organizing virtual games for the teams often energizes team meetings over Zoom. Such games could be a virtual treasure hunt, a simple trivia, a fun quiz, bingo, other party games, etc.
These games build a feeling of togetherness, which motivates team members to remain alert in the meetings.
4. Celebrate festivals or special occasions like wins for the team
Celebrating a virtual team meeting on Zoom can do wonders to boost the team’s energy levels. Since the team is not in face-to-face contact anymore, even small achievements demand celebrations in addition to the big wins of other socio-cultural festivals.
These activities motivate a team and energize them by providing the human touch usually lacking in boring regular virtual meetings.
5. Organize monthly coffee talks with felicitation of achievers
It is essential for teams that work together for prolonged times to periodically have informal “coffee talks” over a virtual meeting.
You can combine such informal sessions with a monthly felicitation for achievers in the team. Such regular arrangements energize the teams, and people look forward to the next occurrence.
6. Invite team members to showcase their expertise or hobbies
Invite team members who have exceptional talent (in music/dance/others) to perform on special occasions. These events help others to know their teammates better and build a feeling of togetherness and energy.
7. Declare meetings with fun-based themes
Often, teams can declare fun-based themes for their Zoom meeting. These can be special costume-based meetings or meetings with the favorite backgrounds of participants. These events unleash creativity and energize the group.
In conclusion, there are several ways to energize a team meeting on Zoom. Implementing these ideas is often critical for the success of the teams.