Meeting etiquette: new rules for 2024

Behaving professionally during meetings is synonymous with productivity and support in the evolving workplace. We break down how to nail meeting etiquette.

Our experts

We are a team of writers, experimenters and researchers providing you with the best advice with zero bias or partiality.
Written and reviewed by:

As hybrid work and new technologies become the norm during team meetings, business etiquette and professionalism need to be redefined. Gone are the traditional face-to-face roundtable discussions of the past, we now have to mute our microphones in video conferences or ensure our phones are on silent to avoid distractions.

To help make sense of these new dynamics and interactions, this guide explores the new rules that govern in-person, remote, and hybrid meetings.

What is meeting etiquette?

Meeting etiquette describes the expected behaviours of people in a professional meeting setting. These include arriving on time, putting your phone on silent, providing a detailed agenda or preparing for the agenda points, listening actively to others, and avoiding interruptions. Good meeting etiquette promotes professionalism and respect amongst your team, ensuring productive discussions.

Keep in mind that not all meetings require the same degree of etiquette – for instance, informal gatherings like business dinners or brainstorming sessions may not require a structured agenda.

Why is meeting etiquette important?

Meeting etiquette plays a key role in improving professional interactions and creating a positive work environment. Here are some reasons why it’s important:

  • Improves communication: by actively listening, avoiding interruptions, and staying engaged, your team can exchange ideas effectively, leading to clearer understanding and alignment on key issues.
  • Increases productivity: adhering to punctuality and providing a detailed agenda helps meetings stay focused and on track. This leads to a productive use of time, enabling your team to accomplish objectives and assign actions in a clear and timely manner.
  • Improves relationships: respectful behaviour in meetings, like attentive listening and valuing the contributions of others, strengthens professional relationships.

Do virtual meetings need different etiquette rules?

While many traditional etiquette rules still apply, the shift to virtual meetings does mean tailoring best practices when joining your team on Google Meet or Teams. Factors such as technological glitches, varying internet connections, and the absence of physical cues can impact communication. The temptation of distractions within your immediate environment also jeopardises your ability to focus when compared with in-person meetings.

Here are a few tips to follow to remain polite and professional in virtual meetings:

  • Technical preparedness: ensure familiarity with the chosen virtual platform and troubleshoot any potential issues beforehand. For instance, if you have to give a virtual presentation, try sharing your screen in a test call.
  • Professional appearance: dress appropriately and maintain a tidy workspace and background to portray professionalism.
  • Engagement and active listening: demonstrate active engagement through attentive listening, nodding, and providing verbal cues to signal understanding.
  • Managing distractions: put your personal devices on silent to avoid distracting notifications, close unnecessary tabs, and dedicate your full attention to the meeting.
Did you know?

According to exclusive Startups 100 data, the most common colleague issues are related to etiquette and best practice: conflict among team members (37%), balancing formal and informal communication (34%), managing communication overload (32%), and important messages becoming lost (31%).

Hybrid meeting etiquette best practices

As hybrid work becomes the norm, mastering the art of hybrid meeting etiquette is paramount for fostering inclusive and productive interactions. Hybrid meetings, which include both in-office and remote participants, present unique challenges and opportunities that require careful consideration and strategic implementation.

Effective communication strategies

  • Use technology thoughtfully: leverage video conferencing tools and collaboration platforms to facilitate seamless communication between in-office and remote attendees. Ensure that everyone has access to the necessary documents and resources well in advance.
  • Establish clear meeting norms: set expectations for participation, such as muting microphones when not speaking, using the chat function for questions, and raising hands virtually before speaking.
  • Encourage active engagement: foster a culture of inclusivity by actively soliciting input from both in-person and remote participants. Assign a facilitator to moderate discussions and ensure everyone has an opportunity to contribute.

Balancing inclusivity

  • Equalise participation: give remote attendees equal opportunities to speak by actively soliciting their input.
  • Provide multiple communication channels: use chat functions and virtual whiteboards to enable real-time collaboration and the sharing of ideas.
  • Consider time zone differences: when scheduling meetings, be mindful of time zone disparities and strive to accommodate remote participants’ schedules when possible.

Leveraging technology for enhanced experience

  • High-quality audio visual equipment: invest in reliable audio-visual equipment to ensure clear communication and minimise technical difficulties.
  • Virtual breakout rooms: use virtual breakout rooms to facilitate small group discussions and foster collaboration among both in-office and remote participants.
  • Polls and surveys: use online polling and survey features to gauge participant engagement and gather feedback on meeting effectiveness.

New rules for meeting etiquette in 2024

As dynamics change in workplaces and hybrid meetings become the norm, it’s essential to adapt meeting etiquette. Here are some important considerations and new rules:

  • Acknowledging cultural and diversity considerations: be mindful of cultural norms regarding communication styles, decision-making processes, and expressions of respect. Embrace diversity as a strength and actively seek to incorporate diverse perspectives into discussions. For instance, neurodiverse team members might prefer to engage via the chat channel rather than speaking in front of a large group.
  • Incorporating wellness breaks for prolonged virtual sessions: this can help maintain focus and reduce burnout. Schedule short breaks to allow participants to rest, recharge, and address personal needs, promoting overall wellness and engagement.
  • Cultivate empathy: actively listen to others, acknowledge their perspectives, and demonstrate understanding and compassion. Foster a supportive meeting environment where participants feel valued, respected, and heard.
  • Encourage active participation: create opportunities for all attendees to contribute, regardless of their role or seniority. Avoid common pitfalls such as monopolising the conversation, multitasking, or dismissing others’ ideas.
10 meeting etiquette do's and don'ts


  • Be punctual: arrive on time for meetings to show respect for others’ schedules and ensure the meeting starts promptly.
  • Come prepared: review meeting materials in advance, contribute to the agenda if necessary, and be ready to actively participate in discussions.
  • Listen actively: give your full attention to speakers, maintain eye contact, and refrain from interrupting. Active listening fosters understanding and collaboration.
  • Contribute constructively: share your ideas and insights thoughtfully, contribute to discussions, and offer solutions to challenges discussed during the meeting.
  • Use technology wisely: familiarise yourself with meeting tools and mute your microphone when not speaking to minimise background noise and distractions.


  • Don’t use your phone: refrain from checking emails, texting, or using your phone during meetings as it can be distracting and is disrespectful.
  • Don’t interrupt: wait for others to finish speaking before contributing. Interrupting can disrupt the speaker’s train of thought and hinder effective communication.
  • Don’t engage in side conversations: Avoid chatting with other members of the team on additional platforms (Slack or WhatsApp) during a meeting. You should be able to openly discuss your thoughts with everyone in the meeting, rather than covertly.
  • Don’t forget to show gratitude: always express appreciation for the time and contributions of meeting participants. A simple ‘thank you’ goes a long way in fostering a positive meeting culture.


Mastering meeting etiquette is essential for building successful professional relationships and nurturing a collaborative work environment. Whether it’s making sure remote participants feel part of the conversation or silencing your notifications on your phone, having good meeting etiquette is conducive to better teamwork and productive gatherings.

While meeting etiquette calls for professionalism, it’s also okay to let loose in some situations. If you’re grabbing a drink with your team to celebrate meeting your targets, or if you’re trying to wow a prospective client over dinner, you don’t need a strict meeting agenda or staunch formalities – be as professional as the situation demands.

Written by:
Fernanda is a Mexican-born Startups Writer. Specialising in the Marketing & Finding Customers pillar, she’s always on the lookout for how startups can leverage tools, software, and insights to help solidify their brand, retain clients, and find new areas for growth. Having grown up in Mexico City and Abu Dhabi, Fernanda is passionate about how businesses can adapt to new challenges in different economic environments to grow and find creative ways to engage with new and existing customers. With a background in journalism, politics, and international relations, Fernanda has written for a multitude of online magazines about topics ranging from Latin American politics to how businesses can retain staff during a recession. She is currently strengthening her journalistic muscle by studying for a part-time multimedia journalism degree from the National Council of Training for Journalists (NCTJ).

Leave a comment

Leave a reply

We value your comments but kindly requests all posts are on topic, constructive and respectful. Please review our commenting policy.

Back to Top