With Covid-19 and WFH still maintained, so many online meetings are conducted.  They come in variety of forms-from relatively official company meetings to very casual online drinking get-together, and some casual/informal meetings with friends in between.  As I host and participate many, I realize that online meeting reveals each person’s capability to communicate.  I have learned some excellent examples of comments- clear, concise, with just about enough background information and thinking.  It almost looks this is a great skill that you can learn.  (I have so much to learn.)

At the same time, I find some people need some push to speak up, as they do not want to interrupt others etc.  I personally feel it is facilitator’s role to ensure voices from as many as possible, and not let few dominate the discussion.  It is usually easier if we have some structure or format such as remarks followed by Q & A, etc. I also find that general comments without specific examples are very difficult to follow.

We also hear that “read the air” tendency found at some Japanese organizations will be reduced in online meetings.  (I personally think this is great!) There is no question that online meetings require more concentration than face-to-face meetings and they tend to be more efficient (except the casual online drinking session.)

This is such an interesting development and result from Covid 19 pandemic.  I myself have so much to learn both “Do’s” and “Don’ts.” When we communicate in other languages than mother tongue, this will become harder and at the same time, more opportunities to sharpen our communication capability. Covid-19 is giving all of us hard time, but it offers something positive, too, if we are willing to look at positive side.