Tips for successful video conferencing
Many professionals still believe that face-to-face meetings are the most effective way of doing business. However, thanks to advancements in technology and faster Internet speeds, video conferencing — or meeting virtually — is the next best thing. And it’s important to understand that to maintain your usual level of professionality during a video conference, there’s more to it than simply downloading an app and talking into your smartphone. Keep the following tips in mind.
- Make sure you have a high-speed, reliable Internet connection. This will ensure a seamless connection. If you’re connecting to the Internet via your laptop instead of a desktop computer, use a wired Ethernet jack to avoid WiFi issues.
- Choose robust video conferencing software. If you’re organizing the meeting, determine which app to use. Nate Drake and Brian Turner list several reliable apps in their TechRadar article “Best video conferencing software of 2019.”
- Test your equipment. Before the meeting, make sure the software is installed correctly on your device and practice using it. Also, you should test your camera, as well as your audio input and output.
- Have a backup plan. In the article “Best Practices for Effective Video Conferencing,” Stanford University IT advises that you need a backup plan to communicate with your colleagues in the event your connection goes down. Keep at least one other person’s phone number and email address on hand so you can check in with him or her that way if necessary.
- Create the right setting. Avoid backlighting from any windows or lights, as this will make for a poorly lit video. Instead, position yourself in a space that’s quiet and properly lit. It’s always wise to minimize any distractions such as paintings on the walls or clutter on your desk. In addition, keep all windows closed and audio-producing devices off to minimize the chances of background noise interfering with the meeting.
- Dress and behave professionally. It’s important to dress and behave as professionally as you would during an in-person meeting — even if you’re working from the comfort of your own home. Don’t make the mistake of wearing a collared shirt and tie with shorts or some other casual attire — you never know when you might have to get up to do something.
- Know when to use the “mute” button. In his Entrepreneur article “The Biggest Do’s and Don’ts of Video Conferencing,” Bryan Lovgren recommends muting your microphone when you aren’t speaking. This will help minimize any distracting background noise so everyone can focus on what the speakers have to say.
With increased globalization, more and more companies will leverage video conferencing to connect employees in different locations. So bear these pointers in mind to connect with your remote colleagues in a confident and professional manner.
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