Ensure that you protect your church and help make your meetings more effective and productive with these nine important and practical tips.
Whether you’re a new church planter with the initial Advisory Board who lives miles apart for one another, or the bi-vocational Pastor who is trying to manage his full-time job, balancing family life, finding time to rest in God, all while planting a church — we recognize that remote meetings are becoming more of the norm.
While remote meetings will likely never reach the same level of intimacy as a face-to-face meeting, there are ways to make sure they run as smoothly as possible. Here are nine important and practical tips to ensure that you protect your church and help make your meetings more effective and productive.
Check your bylaws. Make sure that your bylaws include the proper information for holding remote meetings. They must outline your synchronous meeting format and asynchronous meeting format. This will protect your ministry. Let us know if we can help your ministry in this area!
Choose your tools. Choose the right remote meetings tool for your needs. We believe that one of the most important things about running a remote meeting is the tool used to run it. Different teams and meeting arrangements may call for different types of tools. Here is a list of some of the options that we see to be very effective for church planters.
Lifesize App – This app is streamlined and built to enhance all the different ways your team communicates. This is a more secure tool for important meetings.
GoToMeeting – A robust and reliable online meetings program that boasts screen sharing and has a great call quality. This is a more secure tool for those important meetings.
Join.me – This is great for fast and easy screen share meetings.
Uber Conference – Offers quick access for friendly conference call experience. It also allows screen sharing and has a mobile app feature.
Google Hangouts – This app allows you to connect This is a very convenient option if your team uses Google Calendar to manage your schedule.
Sameroom – This app lets you easily connect rooms or channels between teams no matter what platform they're on. This allows each team to use their favorite chat app, without having to learn a whole new one.
Cover your bases. Include a dial-in option or encourage the team to have a mobile hotspot ready. Many remote meeting tools are designed to work primarily over internet connections. But what happens if someone’s internet goes down or slows down? It is important to cover all your bases to ensure your meeting goes off without a hitch.
Be mindful of time zones. When you are scheduling the meeting be sure that all those who attend know the time zone determined for the meeting. There’s nothing worse than finding out that one of your members is waking up before 5:00 am to join a meeting that on your end happens to be within normal business hours.
Create an agenda. Managing your meeting’s agenda is important to running it successfully whether remotely or in person. However, it is especially important to have a well-written and organized agenda for a remote meeting due to the potential of poor call quality. This allows for any callers whose call drops to easily find out what they’ve missed and where to pick back up.
Have a clear leader. Having someone designated as the meeting’s point leader facilitates a better environment for a meeting to stay on track. Without someone navigating the team through the agenda, remote board meetings can turn into a free-for-all, often leading to longer calls with less time spent on topic.
Choose your location wisely. A busy coffee house may not be the best place to hold a remote meeting. Or, my personal favorite (firsthand experience) is when a family best decides to join in on the meeting. As cute as we all know our pets are they may not be the best to communicate those important topics that need to be covered. Being mindful of noises or specific distractions will help make your meeting more effective.
Make sure that communication is honoring and effective. Some ways you can do that is to ensure that you introduce everyone at the very beginning, ensure everyone knows how that can chime in on the conversation without speaking over each other, and ask for feedback at a designated time within the meeting to keep it on track and to ensure all areas of your meeting agenda are covered.
Get personal. Most importantly take time to enjoy fellowshipping with your team! Share how you are doing, ask for prayer, feedback, lean on one another. That meeting could be a breath of fresh air for you, take unnecessary things off your plate, or provide much needed prayer over areas of need.
If you have any questions or requests, feel free to reach out to us by using our contact form.