"You need a plan for managing virtual meetings, or they'll chew you up. Here are some best practices that work.
- Every time you accept a meeting request, block a little time either right before or right after the meeting. This can help reduce the number of back-to-back meetings you have.
- Don't automatically accept meeting requests either, which most of us do because it's a habit. If you don't attend, ask to be included in the meeting notes, and if you don't attend, you might have one of your team participate. It can be a good developmental opportunity for them, and they can debrief you after.
- A lot of meetings cover multiple topics so ask to address your topics either at the beginning or the end of the meeting. That's going to allow you to join the meeting in progress or jump off the call early.
- If you're stuck in a longer call, take a walk during the call. The walk's going to give you an energy boost, and it's going to allow you to focus more during the call.
One last point, make sure you don't have 'meeting-itis', because it's a very common affliction. Meetings can easily fill the day, and it's easy to talk yourself into meetings.
Meetings can become a status symbol. You have to participate because you're important, or you have to attend because you think that important decisions can't be made without you, or you want to know what's going on, or you don't want to appear absent, or you got to defend your turf.
Now, these might be valid reasons, but they might be emotional reasons, too. The best way to treat 'meeting-itis' is to put your ego aside and focus on the bigger picture."