Everything is virtual

Virtual meetings are the only way things are getting done right now. People primarily use Google Hangouts or are using them as a platform if they didn't already have a conference app in place. For larger groups these meetings can be effective but only with proper planning.  I spoke to one business owner today who just left a conference call with 30-plus people and it worked well with the following tactic :

  • Choose a moderator who has an agenda that has been shared prior to the meeting.
  • Have participants use the chat module to raise questions, make points or request the floor.
  • The moderator should be able to maintain control of who’s mic is live and be diligent to include each person that wants to talk.

Smaller groups can be more casual but a framework really helps when you don't have the option of seeing the social cues that help drive interactions.

How are virtual meetings working for you?  Once things lighten up a bit will you keep things virtual?

Food service is having a tough time

No surprise here.  Some restaurants that are already set up with mobile ordering and solid takeout options have been able to adapt pretty easily. Fine dining, on the other hand, is having a pretty rough go. There's really no way around this and shifting dine-in customers to takeout is a steep hill to climb.  We’d love to hear about any communication strategies that are working for you.  

Will shaking hands become a taboo?

We were watching a movie online last night (at least this is happening in the streaming era). The scene was a room full of lawyers introducing each other for a deposition.  20+ handshakes in seconds.  Both Traci and I cringed.  It’s funny how fast that happened and it got us thinking about how long it will take for handshakes to be the norm again.

What are you doing to say hello?  Elbow taps, waving, a bow of respect?

Some businesses are realizing their office space is underutilized and obsolete.

Many companies have “work anywhere” policies or workers are out and about a lot.  One business owner I talked to was already recognizing that their offices were really just a place to provide employees with a space to connect with others more than to get their work done.

Can we still create a culture when our business is mostly remote?

We have to start thinking differently

The world has been in a slow change for a while now. Covid-19 is a catalyst that will accelerate things.  It is a bit painful now but many of the long-term changes that come from this are things that have been in the pipeline for a long time. Online, people are being more kind and not allowing trolls to drive the conversation.  We will be forced to be more efficient. 

I wish I had a crystal ball, but I really believe the next best thing is open conversations about and idea sharing.   Let’s work together to drive some of these changes in a direction that we’d like to see!