Feeling the pressure to bridge the gap between remote and on-site team members while keeping everything running smoothly and ensuring everyone’s happy?
You’re not alone.
Navigating the new hybrid world can feel like trying to solve three Rubik’s cubes while juggling them at the same time. One minute, you’re confident you’ve got it all figured out, and the next, you’re hit with a hitch that threatens to undo all your hard work.
There’s no doubt about it — you need to be armed with up-to-date information to succeed.
Hybrid meetings aren’t just another buzzword. They’re a game-changer for today’s fast-paced, highly adaptable workplace.
Quick Summary: Here’s a list of everything we’ll cover about hybrid meetings in this article:
Ready to lift the lid on hybrid meetings, debunk a few myths about them, learn about their potential pitfalls, and discover their benefits?
Let’s dive in!
Hybrid meetings are video- or audio-based meetings that involve a mix of in-person attendees and remote participants.
The in-person attendees participate from a single location, such as a conference room, and the remote participants join via an online meeting platform.
While hybrid work models aren’t new, the pandemic-induced shutdown accelerated this more flexible way of working, as it forced many companies to rethink the traditional 9–5 work structure.
Hybrid work in general — and hybrid meetings in particular — are now the model of choice for as many as 83% of workers.
Employees and employers often use the terms “hybrid meetings” and “virtual meetings” interchangeably. While they do have similarities — the need for a robust technological setup chief among them — they’re not the same.
A hybrid meeting is a blended model and requires the attendance of both in-person and remote participants. On the other hand, virtual meetings — also called fully remote meetings — are conducted entirely online.
The three main types of hybrid meetings can be categorized based on how participants join:
Each of these meeting types requires:
Hybrid meetings are becoming more popular because they can provide maximum flexibility and convenience for participants. Hybrid meeting pros include:
That said, hybrid meetings aren’t always ideal. Some limitations of hybrid meetings include:
According to Miro Miroslavov, our CEO and co-founder, “Hybrid work doesn’t happen by chance.”
The same can be said of hybrid meetings. You have to be “intentional, proactive, and thoughtful to make it work properly.”
In other words, you need a plan.
Here are four pre-meeting best practices for an effective and inclusive hybrid meeting.
Let’s take a look at a couple of stats:
If asynchronous communication is enough, maybe you don’t need a meeting.
Because hybrid meetings are so dynamic, it’s a good idea to create a setup document that contains all the equipment you’ll need.
Here’s a simple hybrid meeting room setup checklist.
Because you’ll need to go beyond Zoom or Google Meet, make sure you book a suitable meeting room well in advance. And by the way, check out some creative meeting room name ideas here.
If you want to see how OfficeRnD Hybrid’s meeting room booking software can streamline meeting room bookings, you can try it for free. Now, it features meeting services that allow you to request additional services such as catering, custom equipment setups, room layout reorganizations, and more.
Technology can make or break your hybrid meeting, so it’s important to test anything you plan to use before the big day.
Audio is particularly important — even more so than video. And let’s not forget a stable Internet connection, of course.
You’ll also want to make sure that you can schedule your meeting efficiently. OfficeRnD Hybrid is an embeddable solution that does just that. It also integrates with your pre-existing tech stack so that you can book desks and rooms through the tools you already use — whether that’s Microsoft Tech Stack, Google Workspace, Slack, or something else entirely.
For more details, watch the video below:
If you want to encourage engagement, make sure that your agenda caters to all the meeting’s attendees, regardless of how they join.
Provide opportunities for everyone to speak. Monitor the virtual chat and the raised hand feature in the video conferencing tool so you can see when your remote attendees want to contribute.
Finally, create, release, and enforce a hybrid meeting etiquette guide that includes a list of the behavior expected of all attendees, each of whom plays an important role in the meeting’s success (more on this in the next section).
Note: While it may be tempting to require everyone — even those on-site — to join a meeting through their laptops, it’s not necessary, or appropriate, in a hybrid meeting. After all, if everyone is joining through laptops anyway, why not just host a virtual meeting?
As mentioned, you should have an inclusive etiquette guide that defines each attendee’s role and expected behavior.
Take a look at the tips below to run — and enjoy — an effective and inclusive hybrid meeting.
To effectively and inclusively chair a hybrid meeting, you need to do the following:
Facilitating effective meetings requires you to:
If you’re a meeting attendee, you should:
We’ve covered a lot of ground in this post, from clarifying what hybrid meetings are and highlighting their requirements to understanding how they differ from virtual gatherings. We’ve also taken a balanced look at their upsides and downsides and offered you a practical toolkit full of best practices for all the roles involved in these meetings.
Hybrid meetings are flexible and convenient. But at the same time, they pose unique challenges to overcome.
One of these challenges involves the meeting room setup. Do it right by ensuring that you book a suitable room with the technological capability your hybrid meeting needs.
OfficeRnD Hybrid includes a meeting room booking software that makes it easy for your hybrid organization to find and book rooms for on-site collaboration on any device.
If you want to start holding successful hybrid meetings get started for free with OfficeRnD Hybrid.
The difference between these meeting types lies in the location of the meeting participants. An in-person meeting is attended by people on-site, while a hybrid meeting always has at least some virtual participants.
The purpose of a hybrid meeting is to provide a consistent experience for all attendees, no matter how they choose to participate. It places remote and physical workers on equal footing, offering a more flexible way for them to collaborate and communicate with each other.
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