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Keeping Your Culture With a Virtual Huddle

Posted March 20, 2020

Tonya Lanthier, RDH

A Virtual Huddle is a great idea to help keep everyone unified.

Everyone is feeling the uncertainty of how the Covid-19 pandemic will play out.  In many cases, you have an opportunity to keep your teams connected, organized, and most importantly, up to date with your practice’s needs and challenges.  This is your opportunity to lead your teams through this storm.  Now more than ever is the time to keep your office culture strong with a virtual huddle.

There are 3 important ways you can keep your culture strong, ensure your team has all the most important information, and will be ready to hit the ground running when this crisis ends – and it will end. You will need everyone on your team ready and able to move forward.

Hold a Virtual Huddle

How:

There are several software apps that are great at helping you facilitate these huddles.

  • Zoom
  • Google Hangouts (which we use at DentalPost)
  • GoToMeeting
  • Adobe Connect Pro
  • Cisco Webex
  • UberConference

This list is for information only, and you should choose the app that works best for you.  At DentalPost, we use Google Hangouts and Zoom regularly.  Both of these apps are free and easy to set up and use.

Like a physical “in-person” huddle, you will want to set up a specific meeting time and format to suit your needs.  The key to making this kind of meeting work is to ensure all participants have a reliable internet connection (bad connections are a distraction for everyone and can diminish the experience).  If necessary, you can do phone/facetime.

web chat virtual huddle

Frequency, Timing, and Logistics:

As a best practice, you should hold a virtual huddle 2-3 times per week to keep your team engaged and unified.  Timing is critical for an effective meeting.  The appointment of a timekeeper is recommended in addition to the team leader.  The emphasis for the timekeeper is to maintain scheduling, while the leader manages meeting interaction. 

It is important that participants should be in a private space, with no interruptions for the duration of your virtual huddle to maintain confidentiality and prevent huddle distractions. Like your “in office” huddles, these should be short and focused.

virtual huddle on computer and phones

Be sure to send discussion topics and have your teams prepare ahead of the huddle time.

We recommend the following format:

  • Leader’s Welcome                         5 minutes

Here is where you set the tone for the huddle.  We recommend using “one word” opens to help put participants at ease.

  • Team Updates                               2 minutes per team member
  • Issues/Challenges/Solutions      1 minute per team member
  • Leader’s “To Do’s”                      5 minutes

Remember, in times of adversity and challenge, this is an important opportunity to keep your team centered and focused on what you need from them and also, what they need from you as their leader.

For more information and ideas to help your practice through this time of crisis, please visit www.dentalpost.net

We are here to help.

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