Virtual Meetings are Here to STAY

Workforce planning experts, urban planners, investors and business leaders agree. The way we work has changed.

US Workforce Working Remotely


For those with responsibility to organize and lead planning efforts the implications are mixed.

On the PLUS side:

On the NEGATIVE side:

Remote meeting technology and capabilities are maturing rapidly within organizations. 

Burnout from virtual meetings has grown rapidly and does not show any signs of mitigating.


Factors Impacting Remote Working Burnout

From Philip Arkcoll of Worklytics 

There are more meetings for remote workers. Meetings are UP 23%.

Remote workers report more interruptions from email and team communication tools such as Slack and MS Teams.
Disruptions are UP 34%.  Focus time is DOWN 29%.

People working from home report they are working longer hours.
34% report a LONGER WORK DAY.  A 23% increase in AFTER-HOURS  EMAILS.

These times of uncertainty and change mean that strategic thinking is happening more than ever. 

We are past the initial days of the pandemic; where options did not exist. Now leadership teams must stay flexible while they think strategically about how to make shifts.


Their decisions could position their organization for a big leap ahead or put its future at risk. To build the best response plan, leadership teams need to activate the creativity, talent and deep expertise within their organizations. The tool most widely used to coordinate this input is (yet another) a virtual meeting.


how to conduct virtual planning meetings


Causes of Virtual Meeting Burnout

The constant strain of focusing your vision at a monitor screen for extended periods of time is a leading factor in virtual meeting exhaustion. In a meeting room you can look at the presenter, at the screen or monitor projecting a presentation and then to a participant making a comment.  Each of these shifts provides the opportunity for your eyes to break from one focus and shift to another, this reduces eye strain and fatigue.


Another source of burnout is the technical nature of these meetings. When there are multiple participants the meeting leader must ensure that each participant has entered the virtual room and is able to participate.  This often results in tedious delays as one or two participants are guided through technical problem-solving.  

vm burnout

Meetings often have a straggler; someone that comes in just as the meeting is about to start, but this usually does not stop the meeting from proceeding as planned.  The broadcast nature of and the specific mechanical requirement for participating means that all stops until everyone is ready.  For the majority that are waiting, it is a time waster and will cause participants to disengage. 


Lastly, one of the most exhausting aspects of virtual meetings with groups of participants is their broadcast structure.  It is estimated that 40% of the US population identifies as introverted. While, not the majority, it is significant.  Depending on your industry, you may have a higher mix of introverts to extroverts.  Virtual meetings don't provide much of a hide out for introverts that prefer the back tables in large conference rooms and often only speak during small group discussions.  Large groups of people drain the energy away from introverts. 


Virtual planning meetings tend to be longer than a problem-solving or update meeting, and they often have groups of as few as 15 to as many as 30 participants. This many faces seemingly engaging with an introvert will completely zap their energy, meaning your planning will not get the benefit of their insights and expertise.  I have to say, that even as extrovert, I find group virtual meeting draining.  


As experts in group planning, we immediately recognized the issues teams will face now that in person off-site meetings are out of bounds for the foreseeable future.


Introducing the new Virtual Planning Essentials.

Pandemic or not, businesses need to create plans for their next year.

Leadership teams must think through how the world has changed, and how they will respond to thrive and grow in light of these changes.

Teams must breakdown their goals and build collaborative plans to meet or exceed them.

While we are all rapidly becoming very well acquainted with the technology to connect virtually, we are missing the core techniques and tools that can transition a virtual meeting into a virtual planning "off-site."


Virtual Meeting Tools

Fully Use Virtual Meeting Tools Available

Virtual meeting software apps are full of features to increase engagement and foster new ways of working together remotely. However, finding all these tools and sifting through the features available can be overwhelming.
Learn how to fully use the virtual meeting toolset available to enhance participation and engagement.

Learn More

Virtual Meeting Process

Design & Structure with New Constraints

Virtual planning meetings have their own unique demands on how to prepare and structure these meetings to engage participation and stimulate strategy development.
Design and prepare for planning in the virtual meeting format that will stimulate, distill, and package strategy thinking.

Learn More

Virtual Meeting Engagement

Humanize & Connect within a Virtual Space

Creating a space where all participants feel comfortable, valued, and acknowledged is a requirement for building great strategic thinking as a group. In our strategy sessions, the session facilitator partners with a graphic facilitator to manifest an environment that stimulates creative thinking.
Get the most from your next planning meeting by adding a graphic facilitator.

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Pandemic or not, planning must proceed.

Those that figure out how to engage the creativity and talent of their now remote team will make greater progress than those that are stuck in crisis management.

Grab your copy of our new Virtual Planning Essentials guide and plan to hit the ground running and speed ahead as soon as conditions favor it.

What our clients say about our VIRTUAL PLANNING MEETINGS:

We had our strategy session planned when the Shelter in Place was ordered. We needed to move forward and Focused Momentum worked with us to modify our approach and we hit our deadline. We even had MORE participation in a virtual strategy session than we’ve had at regular planning meetings. People were like WOW! We now have a renewed commitment to the organization, people were energized and excited to help build our future.

Thank you, Cecilia, for your expertise, coordination, and facilitation. I appreciate all the work you've done to prepare and gather all our thoughts and ideas. Your superpower shows in the organized structure, and the outcome of today's engagement. There already has been a lot of positive feedback. And thank you to Emily!

Thank you for today's session. I think it was very productive and went very well for a virtual meeting. Cecilia, your efforts and preparation were evident on how smoothly the meeting ran and the 100% participation from the audience. Also, having Emily's graphic recording really made it personal, interactive and a joy to have as part of the meeting. I enjoyed seeing our words turned into pictures and highly recommend this aspect to continue for future sessions.

Ways to Leverage Virtual Planning Meetings



Give your team a LIFT virtually.

Breakthrough virtual meeting burnout.
Leverage the unique capabilities meeting virtually provides.
Move from response mode to proactive planning for the future.



Enhanced virtual Team Planning

Virtual Strategic Planning



INNOVATE this year's planning.

Structure your planning process to achieve the benefits of a traditional off-site.
Design planning sessions using the virtual planning essentials.
Stimulate creative thinking by humanizing the remote planning environment. 





BOOST Participant's Brainpower.

Engage participants with real-time graphic representations of planning concepts.
Build rapport and trust by showing people they are heard.
Make discussions more tangible by externalizing them in a "shared map". 



add a GR to your next VPM

Virtual Meeting Training


BUILD New Strategy Development Skills.

Fully use the VM tool set to enhance participation and engagement.
Design and prepare to stimulate, distill, and package strategy thinking within the virtual meeting format.
Replicate the benefits of planning retreats by humanizing and connecting participants' creativity leveraging remote capabilities.





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We make strategy possible - pandemic or no pandemic!

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