5-Step Checklist to Make Your Next Video Conference a Success

Software programs such as GoToMeeting and Zoom make it easy for you to remotely connect with other professionals.

With simple tools such as an Internet connection, computer/laptop/phone, and webcam, and with only a few clicks, you can connect with another professional in a matter of minutes.

Video conferencing is a convenient, cost-effective, and easy way to enhance your business profile. Still, it can also become a huge disaster if you don’t prepare ahead of time and adhere to some rules of etiquette.

Here are some tips to make your next video conference a success.

Test ahead of time:

  • Do learn the features of the video conference software prior to the meeting.
  • Do ensure you have a reliable Internet connection.
  • Do make sure your webcam is positioned properly. You don’t want the camera to be zoomed too close to your face or so far away that you can’t be seen, and you certainly don’t want the webcam to cut off a portion of your face. A shot of your upper body centered in the frame is best.
  • Do check the lighting in the room. Too much or too little lighting in the room may make it hard to see you clearly.

Dress to impress:

  • Do dress professionally. A good rule of thumb – dress as if you were holding the meeting in person. Dressing in shorts and a t-shirt may be too casual for a business meeting and may not make a great impression.
  • Don’t look like you just rolled out of bed. Comb your hair.
  • Don’t wear loud jewelry. Bangles or charm bracelets, for example, can be distracting when moving your arms.

Limit distractions:

  • Do mute your phone when you are not speaking.
  • Do turn off loud devices in the background like a radio or television.
  • Do check your surroundings. Survey the webcam space for clutter and inappropriate items that may be hanging on your wall.

Pay attention:

  • Do put your cell phone on silent, close out of your email and turn off all other devices. Receiving a text message or email may turn your attention away from the meeting.
  • Don’t make side conversation if multiple people are in the room with you, especially when the person on the other end is speaking.

Food for thought:

  • Don’t drink or eat during the meeting. Your crunching may be loud. And imagine going to take a sip of your hot coffee and the cup slips out of your hand. On a side note, it’s OK to keep water nearby just in case you get a tickle in your throat.
Anthony Gaenzle
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