Three easy ways to ensure that online meetings run smoothly and productively.

In recent years, online meetings have become increasingly popular due to the rise of remote work and the need for virtual collaboration. However, it’s not always easy to ensure that online meetings run smoothly and productively. This is where the impact of a manager on online meeting behaviours becomes crucial. In this blog post, we’ll explore the importance of a manager’s role in online meetings and discuss three key techniques they can adopt to make them more effective.

Firstly, it’s important to understand the significance of a manager’s influence on online meeting behaviours. Studies have shown that the behaviour of a group is often shaped by the leader’s actions and communication style. This is known as the “leader-member exchange theory” (LMX), which highlights the importance of the relationship between the leader and their team. In the context of online meetings, this means that a manager’s actions can greatly impact the behaviour of their team during the meeting.

According to a survey conducted by OWLLabs, a company that focuses on remote work, a staggering 89% of respondents stated that video conferencing helps them feel more connected to their colleagues. However, despite the clear benefits of online meetings, they can be challenging due to technical issues, distractions, and other factors that can lead to a lack of engagement. This is where the manager’s role becomes crucial.

So, what are some techniques that a manager can adopt to improve online meeting behaviours?

  1. Set clear expectations and guidelines

Before the meeting starts, it’s important for the manager to set clear expectations and guidelines for the team. This can include the purpose of the meeting, the agenda, and the expected outcomes. By setting these expectations upfront, team members will know what is expected of them and can prepare accordingly. Additionally, it’s important for the manager to set guidelines for meeting etiquette, such as keeping the camera on and muting the microphone when not speaking. By doing so, the manager can create a more structured and productive meeting environment.

  1. Encourage participation and engagement

During the meeting, the manager should encourage participation and engagement from all team members. This can include asking open-ended questions, actively listening to responses, and creating opportunities for collaboration. By doing so, team members will feel more valued and engaged in the meeting, which can lead to a more productive outcome.

According to a study conducted by the University of California, team members who actively participated in meetings felt more engaged and connected to their colleagues, leading to higher levels of job satisfaction and overall team performance.

  1. Follow up and provide feedback

After the meeting, it’s important for the manager to follow up with team members and provide feedback on their performance. This can include acknowledging contributions made during the meeting, providing constructive criticism, and offering support for any challenges that were discussed. By doing so, team members will feel supported and valued, which can lead to a more positive and productive team dynamic.

In conclusion, the impact of a manager on online meeting behaviours is significant. By setting clear expectations and guidelines, encouraging participation and engagement, and providing feedback and support, managers can create a more productive and engaged team dynamic. This is crucial for remote teams, where online meetings are often the only opportunity for team members to connect and collaborate.


  • Graen, G. B., & Uhl-Bien, M. (1995). Relationship-based approach to leadership: Development of leader-member exchange (LMX) theory of leadership over 25 years: Applying a multi-level multi-domain perspective. The Leadership Quarterly, 6(2), 219-247.
  • OWLLabs. (2019). State of remote work 2019. Retrieved from
  • Bergman, J. Z., Rentsch, J. R