How to Win Friends and Influence People (in a Virtual Meeting)

how to win friends and influence people in virtual meetings

Dale Carnegie's classic book How to Win Friends and Influence People has been a best-seller for nearly a century, providing practical advice on how to build relationships and communicate effectively.

Published in 1936, the book has stood the test of time and its principles are as relevant today as they were then. In a world where remote work and virtual communication are becoming increasingly common, the ability to build relationships and influence business direction in a virtual setting is more important than ever.

In this blog post, we will explore how the principles outlined in Carnegie's book can be applied to virtual meetings and help you make a positive impression, communicate effectively, and build relationships in this new digital landscape.

Building a Good Virtual Impression

The first step in winning friends and influencing people in a virtual meeting is to make a good first impression. Non-verbal communication is key in virtual meetings and it is important to present oneself professionally. Here are some tips to make a good first impression in virtual meetings:

  • Dress professionally: Dress as if you were meeting in person. This will show respect for the meeting and the people you are meeting with.

  • Pay attention to your background: Choose a neutral and professional background for your virtual meeting. A cluttered or distracting background can detract from your message. There's a bit of an art to Zoom background design.

  • Be on time: Just like in an in-person meeting, being on time is crucial in virtual meetings. Being late shows a lack of respect for others' time.

Active Listening and Engagement

Active listening is critical in virtual meetings. When you listen attentively, you show that you value the person speaking and their ideas. Here are some techniques for staying engaged in virtual meetings:

  • Make eye contact: Make eye contact with the camera to show that you are focused and engaged in the meeting.

  • Ask questions: Ask clarifying questions to show that you are paying attention and to keep the conversation flowing.

  • Show empathy: Show empathy by acknowledging the speaker's emotions and expressing understanding.

Effective Communication in Virtual Meetings

Body language plays a crucial role in virtual meetings, as it helps to convey your message and emotions. Here are some tips for using clear and concise language in virtual meetings:

  • Speak clearly: Speak at a moderate pace and volume to ensure that everyone can hear you clearly.

  • Avoid distractions: Minimize distractions like background noise or multiple open windows on your screen.

  • Handle conflict professionally: If conflict arises, handle it professionally and respectfully. Address the issue directly and find a resolution together.

Building Relationships in Virtual Meetings

Building relationships is essential in virtual meetings. Connecting with others in virtual meetings can help to establish trust and strengthen professional relationships. Here are some ways to build relationships in virtual meetings:

  • Get to know others: Take the time to get to know others in the meeting. Ask questions and share personal anecdotes to help build a connection.

  • Follow up after the meeting: Follow up after the meeting to maintain the relationship and show that you value it.

Virtual meetings offer a unique opportunity to build relationships and influence business direction. By making a good first impression, actively listening and engaging, communicating effectively, and building relationships, you can make a positive impact in virtual meetings. Remember to dress professionally, pay attention to your background, be on time, make eye contact, ask questions, show empathy, speak clearly, handle conflict professionally, get to know others, and follow up after the meeting. Implement these tips in your next virtual meeting and watch your virtual relationships thrive.

Mr. Goblin


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