4 ways to deliver better meetings with apps in Microsoft Teams
This post is originally published on Microsoft Teams Blog articles
For so many of us, meetings form an important part of how work is done. With new applications and updates inside of Microsoft Teams, you will be better equipped to handle the ebb and flow of meetings throughout your day.
We’ve recently released apps in meetings, and there are nearly 20 apps now available. To get started with apps in meetings, edit the meetings you have scheduled and sent out within Teams, and select the + button at the top to add apps to your meetings:
Many apps in meetings have a pre-meeting preparation experience you can engage in before a meeting starts (e.g., setting up an agenda, designing simple poll questions.) Then, during a meeting, you can call up your tools as needed and as it fits the conversations you are having. Just like that – you can transform your meeting experiences with different apps to suit the types of meetings you are in.
1. Structured meetings are productive meetings with Decisions
For all the time that you and your colleagues spend within a meeting, you want to ensure you actionable outcomes and next steps. Decisions has extended their Teams integration with an app for meetings – starting with an easy-to-edit agenda that allows you to tag and organize the expected timelines. This will help you, as a meeting organizer, become instantly better structured and outcome-oriented for the meetings you run. Within a meeting, Decisions takes advantage of the meetings pane so that you can see and interact with the agenda, alongside your colleagues, in real time during a meeting. With the power to keep the agenda always in view – alongside capabilities for adding notes, tasks, and taking votes – you can ensure that every great idea and every action follow up is recorded.
See more about Decisions available on Microsoft AppSource.
2. Connect with your team via Teamflect
For managers and their team, the 1-on-1 meeting is a critical tool for team members to shape their relationships– including their status review, yearly plans, mentoring relationships, and more. Teamflect, a new app in Microsoft Teams, provides a way to manage and structure the process of those management relationships within an organization. It evaluates your connections with other colleagues and makes it easy to record follow up notes and feedback from your management conversations with your teammates. Because it particularly focuses on 1-on-1 conversations between managers and their team, it has focused tools to help structure plans for growth for everyone on your team. To have better and more structured 1-on-1s, give Teamflect a try within your next management meetings.
Add Teamflect from AppSource.
3. Poll the meeting audience with Slido
During a meeting – especially a large meeting – you will want to plan for ways to keep the audience engaged. At several points, consider asking the audience questions so you can encourage conversation or tailor your pitch to the mood of the audience. Slido is a simple but flexible polling tool you can integrate into your meeting workflows that help you get a broader sense of the room. Supporting several different question types – including word clouds, multiple choice questions, quizzes and ratings, there are a number of options for pausing during a meeting to ask for more audience participation and engagement.
Add the Slido app to your meetings from Microsoft AppSource.
4. Take a mini-break from meetings with Breakthru
Finally, with more and more digital meetings it is more important to pay attention to your individual workload and sense of fatigue. We have found that ensuring you get time in between meetings to take some time out, relax, and shift your focus can make a big impact to your overall sense of wellbeing, and help you stay refreshed for that final late-afternoon meeting. Breakthru is a new application in Microsoft Teams that helps you do just that – it helps you take 2-minute mini breaks with meditative exercise that can help you and your team re-energize. Whether within a meeting with colleagues, or just by yourself, you can enhance your overall well-being with these helpful restorative pauses that can help clear your mind for what comes next.
Add the Breakthru app to try it out for yourself, or within a meeting.
For all the decisions and actions that take place in meetings, apps within and outside of meetings give you the right tools to get to better outcomes. With these apps in your toolbox, you can run more meaningful and engaged meetings throughout the week – and keep everyone engaged as well.