Skip to main content

Don’t Default to Distance

By March 21, 2023March 27th, 2023Blog

Have you heard about this? 

An all-too-common policy being put in place now across a wide swath of hybrid organizations – if one person in the meeting has to attend virtually, then ALL attendees will attend virtually.

What the what?

In theory, the reasoning behind this might seem sound. It does help with meeting equity because everyone is attending in the same way. There’s no proximity bias because everyone is distant. But here’s the rub.

Distance shouldn’t be the default if you can reap the benefits of having some of the attendees together in the same room. You know the energy generated by the buzz of in-room interaction. That energy doesn’t just stay within the room itself. It can easily seep through the screen and invigorate the experience for everyone, remote and in-person alike.

But it doesn’t happen without intention.

From my vantage point, I see some real success stories out there which usually have several things in common:

  • They experimented with different ways of doing hybrid meetings – from the tech setup to the meeting procedures.
  • They asked for feedback after every meeting to get a sense of what was working and what was not.
  • They used that feedback to inform a very clear set of hybrid meeting guidelines that everyone abides by.
  • They leave room for improvement, re-evaluating regularly to tweak those guidelines based on how they are playing out “in the wild.”

I talked about this and more with Kevin Eikenberry on his excellent “Remarkable Leadership Podcast.”

If you’d rather read than listen – this article “Why Hybrid Meetings are Superior to Other Types” should do the trick. 

If you are ready to get back on the hybrid meeting horse, we are here to help, and you don’t even need to talk to me to get started. LOL! You can get so much good info from the Hybrid Meeting Toolkit, our newest online course on Speaker Dynamics University, that will give you a great foundation to establish your own hybrid meeting guidelines.

But if you WOULD like to talk to me, I’d be delighted to have a chat too!