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We are back with another post that will hopefully bring you a bit closer to your 2022 remote collaboration goals. This post is all about Microsoft Teams Meetings—and whether you just installed MS Teams last night or you’ve been using the workspace for years, we’re sure you will learn something new about Meetings.
Without further ado, let’s jump in.
If you’ve used virtual meeting spaces in the past couple of years (and at this point who hasn’t, right?), then MS Teams Meetings will be a familiar concept to you.
If you’re new to remote collaboration, here’s the gist: Meetings is a video call service integrated in Microsoft Teams. You and your team can use it for quick check-in calls between two people or for org-wide meetings.
Microsoft Teams Meetings let you gather the team no matter where you are without having to use an external virtual meeting service.
If you are in a management position in your company, you might want to tweak Meetings settings and permissions. For example, you may want to restrict who in your company can start and schedule meetings.
To change Meeting permissions, you will need access to the Microsoft Teams Admin Center. Here’s how to get there:
Now that you’re in the Microsoft Teams headquarters, you can add or create Meeting Policies that will apply to your whole organization or to specific users.
Let’s say you want only admin on your team to create and schedule meetings in your Microsoft Teams channels (not too familiar with channels yet? Read our complete guide to Teams channels here). You can create a policy that will restrict all regular and guest users from starting their own meetings:
You will land in a window that lets you name the policy, provide a brief description for other admin, and choose which restrictions to add to this policy.
The “General” settings are the ones that let you turn off meeting creation and sharing for team members (including starting meetings in private channels).
Once you are happy with your new policy, scroll down to the bottom of the window and hit “Save”. Now that policy will apply to all your regular users.
Now Meeting Policies are a great way to get set up for how you want all your meetings to go, but what if you want to make changes to a specific meeting’s permissions before or during the meeting?
By default, when you start or schedule an MS Teams Meeting, the meeting organizer, presenters, and regular attendees will have certain permissions:
|Use mic and video||✅||✅||✅|
|Use the meeting chat||✅||✅||✅|
|Make someone else a presenter||✅||✅||❌|
|Manage breakout rooms||✅||❌||❌|
|Record the meeting||✅||✅||❌|
If the default settings don’t fit your needs (for example, you want your designer to present their project by sharing their screen), you change their role to “presenter” both before the meeting and during a meeting:
You will be redirected to a window in your browser where you can add presenters and organizers to your meeting:
Now that we’ve gotten the more technical stuff out of the way, let’s get into the trenches: creating and scheduling meetings.
You can start a meeting on the spot with anyone in your MS Teams workspace 2 ways:
Most of the time you will probably be scheduling meetings ahead of time, and there’s a couple ways to do that with MS Teams:
In both cases, MS Teams will redirect you to a “Details” window that will let you customize the meeting’s settings:
Here you can add required attendees, add more than one channel to the meeting, or even jot down an agenda for your attendees to look at beforehand. And you can always make changes to your scheduled meeting settings by clicking on the meeting in your Calendar and hitting “Edit”.
Now that the meeting is scheduled, your team members can join the meeting a few different ways:
If you send an invite link from a meeting in progress or a scheduled meeting to anyone in your MS Teams workspace, they will receive a personal notification. If you schedule a meeting for a channel, all the channel members will also be notified—so you can be sure no one will get away with the excuse that they “didn’t see anything about a meeting.”
In a perfect world, everyone you need to connect with has a Microsoft Teams account. However, since that’s not the case, you will probably have to meet with external users from time to time (vendors and clients, for example).
Fret not, anyone with access to the World Wide Web and an email address can join a Microsoft Teams meeting!
To add someone as a guest user to a Microsoft Teams meeting:
The added external users will receive an email with the link to your meeting!
Now what if your external attendees are not familiar with virtual meetings at all and need help joining the meeting?
We’ve got you covered. To join a meeting as a guest, your attendees will need to:
Once they do that, they will be redirected to a screen that will let them enter the meeting from the web by hitting “Continue on this browser” (since these are users that don’t have a Microsoft Teams account.)
The MS Teams app is honestly just as convenient as the PC Microsoft Teams workspace when it comes to Meetings—it may even be a bit easier to use.
To start a meeting on the spot from your mobile device, find the video camera icon in one of two places:
To schedule a Microsoft Teams meeting from your mobile device:
And guess what—adding presenters to your meeting is WAY easier on your mobile app. To change who can share their screen, as well as manage other meeting settings, follow these steps:
Basically, if you have to step away from the office and conduct a meeting from your phone, you can do all the same things you could from your computer or laptop. You can even transfer a meeting in progress from your computer to your phone—find out how at the end of this post.
Now that we’ve given you the general tour of MS Teams Meetings, we’d like to introduce you to some of its key features that will really take your virtual collaboration to a new level.
MS Teams Meetings have a whole host of great tools embedded in the top toolbar to help you make the most of your meeting time:
We’ll guide you through all these cool features in the next section of this post.
And hey, if you are an administrator that values thoughtfully crafted and feature-rich collaboration with your team, Perfect Wiki has everything you need to create a shared body of company knowledge right in Microsoft Teams. Install our collaboration workspace right to your MS teams channels in less than a minute for FREE, no credit card required.
If your remote meetings are going to be a substitute for in-person collaboration, you will without a doubt need to share presentations and documents with the team.
Microsoft Teams has a feature for that—you can share your screen with your attendees, or grant other users the permission to share theirs (refer to the first part of the article to find out how).
To share your screen with the rest of the meeting members, follow these steps:
You can share a lot more than just a slide deck—with Microsoft Teams you can share files, apps on your PC, or browser windows for all attendees to see.
Want to earn your company’s “Most Engaging Presenter” badge? We’ve got you, all you need to do is go from simple screen sharing to advanced presenter modes. For example, if you choose the “Reporter” screen in “Presenter mode” options, your screen or window will appear as a floating banner with you next to it. It looks incredible, but don’t take our word for it—try it out in your next meeting!
Not all Microsoft Teams meetings need to be recorded (especially those quick check-ins and confidential meetings), but if someone on your team couldn’t make it to an important meeting, you can record it and save it for later.
Be sure to send a message to your attendees in the meeting chat and let them know you are recording. Someone might need a second to fix their hair or remove their dog from the frame!
You can stop recording at any time. Or if you want the whole meeting, the recording will be automatically converted, saved, and stored to your Microsoft Teams OneDrive (if you had a meeting in a channel, the redorcing will save to that channel’s SharePoint folder) after the meeting ends.
And it’s important to note that attendees will have access to the recording after the meeting ends:
Let’s say you are doing a presentation for a large audience in a Microsoft Teams meeting. The last thing you want when you ask a question is for attendees to all start unmuting themselves and talking at once.
Thankfully, you can get everyone’s opinions and avoid a cacophony of voices by using the meeting’s chat function. It’s perfect not just for getting written feedback from your attendees, but also:
To open the Microsoft Teams meeting chat, hit “Show conversation” in the top toolbar of your meeting.
You can format your messages to make them stand out in the chat—change fonts, add GIFs and video links, or mark your message as “Important” so all attendees notice it among the potential message spam. You can get all these features in the bottom toolbar of the chat window.
Two important chat features we want to highlight are file attachments and live components.
To send a file to a Microsoft Teams chat, go to “Show conversation” > “Attach files” in the formatting toolbar at the bottom. You can upload a file from OneDrive or from your device.
To send a live component—a task list or an agenda that you and your attendees can interact with together—go to “Insert live component” in that same formatting toolbar and choose from different checklist types, paragraphs, or even tables! Live components are a great way to set the plan for your meeting with your team and check topics as you go.
Disorganized meetings that “could have been an email” are a thing of the past!
It’s possible we’ve all gotten a little too comfortable with working from home—think about all the times you had to frantically clean whichever part of your room was in view of the camera before your virtual meetings.
Microsoft Teams has plenty of virtual backgrounds that do the cleaning for you, and add a bit of pizazz and personality to your daily calls.
Unlike some virtual meeting apps, the MS Teams backgrounds work quite well without a green screen or monochrome background.
All you have to do to add a virtual background to your meeting is:
Custom backgrounds are a great idea for companies that value brand unity—in our experience, they help make calls with customers and external vendors much more professional!
As a cherry on top of all you’ve discovered so far, we gathered a few tips and tricks that will help you tweak your Microsoft Teams meetings to the very last detail and really make this virtual meeting space work for you.
Attending the meeting from your home and don’t have a quiet room to yourself? Microsoft Teams Meetings has a feature for that. Use noise suppression to block out external sounds.
You can enable noise suppression right from the meeting:
If you want your meeting attendees to hear your background sounds (e.g. you want their opinion on your amazing “Working from home” playlist), choose “Low”.
Recording your meeting attendance is not just important for company accountability, it also helps you keep track of who was present for important decisions and customer calls.
You can keep a record of a Microsoft Teams meeting’s attendance a few different ways:
If you value punctuality and want to prevent people from entering a Microsoft Teams meeting after it has started, you can lock the meeting:
You can always unlock the meeting, but if it’s in “Locked” mode, no one from will be able to join it from MS Teams or from externally shared links.
Are you in a team meeting from your laptop, but you need to run an urgent errand while staying connected? No problem, Microsoft Teams lets you transfer the meeting you’re in straight to your phone (or vice versa).
To transfer your meeting presence from one device to another:
Team building is more important now than ever—with so many companies working remotely, it’s easy to feel disconnected from your team members.
With Microsoft Teams’ breakout rooms, you can do small group and one-on-one discussions in your meetings, and help your users get to know each other better! Breaking up your large meeting into smaller groups is also a great way to do focus group brainstorming.
You can split your meeting attendees into small groups any time during the meeting, here’s how:
If you choose to manually assign users to breakout rooms, you will be redirected to do so after hitting “Create rooms”.
Once your breakout rooms are up and running, you can customize the time limit for small group work in the “Settings” menu, and you can send an announcement to all the groups while they’re still in breakout rooms (e.g. “Time to wrap it up, guys!”). Once your set time limit runs out, the breakout rooms will close and everyone will automatically return to the general meeting room.
To set up breakout rooms for a meeting in advance, schedule a meeting the way you normally would in a channel (learn how to schedule meetings here), and after scheduling follow these steps:
We covered screen sharing earlier in this post, but we saved the best part for last—the Microsoft Whiteboard. It’s an MS Teams app that is already installed in your workspace and can be used right away in any meeting.
With Whiteboard, you and your meeting attendees can brainstorm in one creative space together.
To do this, go to “Share content” > “Microsoft Whiteboard”.
Anyone in the meeting can interact with the whiteboard with post-it notes, reactions, and sketch tools, and you can save your brainstorm masterpiece by hitting the “Settings” icon in the top right corner of the whiteboard and selecting “Export image”.
Congrats on completing our mini-course on Microsoft Teams Meetings! We at Perfect Wiki value remote collaboration that is as authentic and versatile as in-person collaboration, so we use MS Teams Meetings, and we hope you will feel more confident using them for your teamwork as well.
Of course, we’re biased when it comes to productive and hassle-free collaboration—that’s what our app was designed to do. Perfect Wiki is a company resource tool that provides pages for you to store and share your user guides, Standard Operating Procedures, marketing strategies, and more.
And we integrate seamlessly with your Microsoft Teams workspace, so you never have to think about switching between apps again.
Install Perfect Wiki for free today, no credit card required, and see just how easy it is to create a shared body of company knowledge, policies, and best practices right in your Microsoft Teams channels.
Like what you’ve read? Pass this post on to a fellow administrator or team manager—we’re positive they will learn something new about Microsoft Teams Meetings.