By Laura Gramling, President, EnSpark Consulting

Creating great virtual meetings requires much of the same thoughtful prework you need for a great in-person meeting with some additional details. The following checklist is focused on virtual meetings of any size or format. 

At EnSpark Consulting, we have spent over 20 years facilitating meetings from 20 people to 1,000s of people, in-person meetings, virtual meetings and hybrid sessions, and all kinds of formats (all-hands meetings, strategy sessions, innovation labs, etc.). A few key principles apply to all of our meeting designs – engage people throughout, build in time for meaningful discussions, and have a path for implementing the ideas and solutions that emerge from the meeting.

Virtual Meetings Checklist


Agenda Design


o How long is the meeting?
o   Consider keeping meetings 2 hour or less OR build in larger breaks (30 minutes instead of 15 minutes) and larger lunch breaks (90 minutes).

o Do you have participants connecting from different time zones?
o   If so, set the time that works best for the most participants.


o Focus on fewer topics.

o Don’t skip on rapport building.
o   For meetings under 25, do introductions.
o   Over 25, use a polling or chat feature to ask participants to introduce themselves.

o Set up ground rules for participation such as no multi-tasking, everyone on video cameras (for smaller groups), mute phones unless speaking.



o #1 Learn what your virtual meeting platform can do for engagement and
use those tools!

o Build in polling throughout the meeting – ask quantitative or qualitative questions to the participants, this will help cut down on distractions and can be employed regardless of group size.

o   Q&A – ask participants to submit questions or comments (via chat or a designated dialogue box) for the speakers.

o Have participants introduce themselves when they speak especially if video cameras are not being used, this helps everyone know who is speaking.

o  For larger meetings, consider using breakout rooms to allow for discussions in small groups. And build in time for “report outs” from the breakout rooms.



o  Ensure the agenda design supports the outcomes and goals.

o  Be deliberate with the agenda and sequence the order of content and engagement segments.
o   Do not just have an engagement segment as the last 10 minutes.

o If possible, have more than 1 person “running the meeting”, have a team approach (see Core Team below).

o Send out the agenda or at least the main topics in advance.

o    Let participants know ahead of time if they are expected to be on video.

o    Determine how the information, ideas and solutions developed during the meeting are going to implemented or carried-forward.

o  Ask for feedback: what worked well and what could be improved regarding the agenda format, amount of content, types of engagement and use of technology.


Core Team

o  MC Role: Have a facilitator or lead person to manage the process, keep the agenda on time, introduce speakers, call on participants, provide instructions for polling, etc. 

o  Engagement Support: Can be a person (or team) to monitor the chat and other dialogue boxes to ensure the speakers or MC is aware of timely questions or comments, they can “run” the polling or engagement segments as well.

o  Technical Support: Have a person (or team) dedicated to ensuring participants can access the virtual meeting platform, muting phones (if using a universal mute function), support the production of what is seen on the screens and changing the layouts as needed (moving from one PPT to another or opening/closing the polling questions, etc.). 

o  Speakers: Working with the team to develop content (PPT, videos, engagement segments) that fit the time allotted, is dynamic and supports the overall purpose and goals of the meeting.

Test Run

o  Conduct a “test run” with all speakers, MC, and support people on the computers they will be using.
o   Ensure everyone can navigate the virtual meeting platform.
o   If using video, ensure speakers can be seen, have good lighting, and their background is professional or professional enough (probably don’t want to see their kitchen, bathroom, messy room, etc.).
o   Ensure everyone’s audio is working; strongly recommend using headsets if using the computer audio for better sound quality.

o  Set up a “behind the scenes” communication channel to ensure the core team can connect with each other and make decisions about on-the-fly changes.



Best Match

Use the virtual meeting platform and engagement tools that BEST supports and helps you deliver the meeting outcomes and goals.

Presentation and Engagement Tools

There are many virtual meeting platforms with a wide variety of tools built in – PPT, video, polling, sharing screens, group chat, etc.


High-Engagement Tools

These technologies allow you to create highly participative brainstorming sessions, solution development, prioritization, action planning and more.


Other Resources


Extraordinary Meetings



Reach out if you want to discuss more about how to create amazing virtual meetings!

Free Guide for Creating
Successful Virtual Meetings

Free Guide for Creating Successful Virtual Meetings

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Free Guide for Creating
Successful Virtual Meetings

Free Guide for Creating Successful Virtual Meetings

Please check your email and confirm your address. NOTE: You may need to check your Promotions folder or your Spam folder.