The useless meetings have led individuals and companies to find another solution. More than one year has been omitted since the COVID-19, and more companies are increasing their communications and team meetings remotely asynchronously.

We need to talk about meetings that are forced to be held simultaneously (Online/in-Person) and review our approaches. 

Meetings that should be asynchronous

How do we know which of our meetings should be held online synchronously or which discussions could be held asynchronous?

With the following examples, I confirm that the use of this template has been effective. Also, I got good results from that in the past year. 

Type 1: General Informations

Instead, of your teammates for a simple notification that may take them a long time. For example, you could provide them on a public channel or email to see them at the right time.

Public notice published in many companies via SMS or their websites is the best example of this. 

Type 2: Status Updates

It is so easy to keep the team up to date on the workload and inform them in writing, and there is no need for synchronous meetings. Instead, you can use internal messengers (Slack, Riot, Rocket Chat, etc.) or work emails. Send your last week’s progress report to all stakeholders and give them a chance to know what they have been working on over the previous week. Thus, holding the synchronous meeting in your organization.

When you invite a team of 12 people to a meeting one hour a week, you lose 12 hours at the end of the week. Your team losses 624 hours during a year.

So be more obsessive about holding synchronous meetings. 

Type 3: Brain Storming Sessions

Studies show that brainstorming sessions generate fewer ideas than other methods. But it is still the default of many teams and organizations to hold this style of meeting. You may be surprised, but that is the reality.

David Fishlock (developer) believes that in general, only a limited number of brainstorming sessions participants are involved in. But, on the other hand, you can send your topic in organization messenger to gather your teammate’s ideas in an asynchronous. 

Remember that brainstorming sessions are held asynchronous. You don’t have unlimited time, and you should not pressure your team to get a quick response.

For example, after sending your first message and starting a new brainstorming thread, let them know that they have 5/6 days to attend this meeting.

Type 4: Planning sessions

The planning sessions or defining your responsible matrix at the beginning of a new project are so important. Still, you could be held asynchronously.

From the beginning to the end of this meeting, the contents and most important discussed topic should be written and then shared with all present/absent members.

An article titled “Starting a new project with asynchronous team” has already been published on your organization’s blog which all person ensure to read it. 

Type 5: Progress of work

When you start a new project, you can do many things simultaneously, from recruiting new people to resolving conflicts between team members and stakeholders. 

Provided you have correctly defined the communication structure of the team members at the beginning of the project. 

Are many information and update groups for team members, mention all stakeholders correctly or put them in a chain of exchanged emails. This point is helpful to keep all teams informed of what happened during the project’s progress. 

Necessary: Each conversation does not require a separate email address or notification in public groups. Sometimes yes, you need to track a topic from a specific person. The best and fastest way is to have a private chat, a single email with the people in question. And if necessary, add other stakeholders to this group’s email.

Holding unnecessary meetings asynchronous can help the increasing your remote teams' productivity.
Holding unnecessary meetings asynchronous can help the increasing your remote teams’ productivity.

Type 6: Review sessions, demo, and feedback

The most valuable and prominent feedback happens when people have enough time to clearly think and express their options.

Given people, the opportunity to review a demo-able product or review the code developed in a new product can lead to better results by holding asynchronously.

Restriction on holding synchronous meetings

It is often difficult to find the right time for all the key stakeholders to attend a meeting simultaneously. Needless to say, holding meetings without the presence of one or more stakeholders is not the right thing to do. You should not allow this to happen in important meetings. 

Therefore, always keep in mind the necessary obsession is holding in-person meetings and, as far as possible, holding the conferences mentioned above asynchronously to have maximum participation. 

Meetings that should not be held asynchronously

Even on a fully remote team, I hold some meetings simultaneously. Some of these meetings, which I insist on having simultaneously, are as follow. 

Type 1: On-boarding and introduction of new members

Team members’ meetings by new joiners should always happen simultaneously. Hearing teammates’ voices and seeing their pictures the condition of their faces is one of the most fundamental reasons I hold these meetings simultaneously.

Sometimes these introductory sessions are spent talking about interests and non-work items. This makes the team members feel better. 

Companionship in non-working groups, sending videos and posts that have an unofficial atmosphere among team members increases their intimacy and helps them more cohesive team. 

Type 2: Important decisions

Asynchronous sessions are slowly based on what I have said. Therefore, in case of an emergency, it is necessary to be available by phone or video at the moment.

Necessary: When these issues are raised, immediately notify team members and ask them to be available at the appointed time. So, that you can inform and decide on the matter ASAP.

Type 3: Complex or detailed documentation

Suppose you can prepare step-by-step instructions for the exact workflow in writing. In that case, you may not have many dependencies and details in your mind. Therefore, you may make a mistake in recording them.

Therefore, this reporting style should hold meetings simultaneously with all presence stakeholders to the desired document together, at the appropriate speed.

Type 4: Meetings with an emotional theme

Humans have a lot of conflict with their body language, tone, and facial expressions in their communications. Unfortunately, these feelings are not transmitted in any way in text-based communications. No matter how much you use emojis and Gifs in your message, it will not replace your tone and mood in conveying the message. 

Hold meetings simultaneously for hard-hitting conversations, such as constructive criticism, effective feedback, discussing sensitive human resource issues, firing, or cutting ties with a team member. 

The emphasis does not mean only.

We all have to rethink how things happen during an epidemic of a particular crisis like COVID-19. As it became impossible to go to our teammates’ desks to pursue the task in these circumstances, people realized that they were changing how they followed their jobs.

Studies have shown that observing effective communication between team members increases happiness and value for them. Also, increase their productivity.

At the same time, it is difficult to break these habits. In addition, a combination of simultaneously and asynchronous meetings may not necessarily be helpful to your team, and you have to decide for yourself how to combine and hold them.

To get started, you can start by moving a repetitive session from simultaneously to asynchronous and see how it goes. Then, communicate, and if you have received good feedback from the team, gradually change the routine of other meetings and share your experience with me