With so many of us working remotely, video meetings are fast becoming the norm. But since this is quite new to many of us, getting the etiquette right for all the different video meetings you’re on can be a challenge. So, what are some of the best practices for video meetings?
It seems that many people sign in to video meetings a few minutes early so if you’re hosting the meeting try to sign in five minutes beforehand to get everything set up.
Introduce everyone on the call. If it’s an external meeting this is important. You want to create a welcoming environment just like you would if you were conducting the meeting in person.
It’s common for video meetings to overrun as it’s assumed everyone is at home so has the time to spare. However, your colleagues and employees need a break between all of these video meetings. Sometimes these meetings are even tougher if you’re cooped up in one room and not getting much exercise. Taking a short break in between is really needed.
Timing is key so be sure not to start late and finish on time.
If it’s a professional meeting? Then dress the part. There are numerous stories now about people being dressed inappropriately for video meetings. In general, try not to wear distracting patterns. For professional meetings, keep it simple and remember to think about how you’d dress if the meeting were in person.
If your video is on and you are on a professional call. You need to look at the camera and stay focused. Try to remember to look into the camera so that you appear engaged. Give your best attention, rather than trying to multitask while you are on the call. People can generally tell when you are not focused on their conversation. Would you be multitasking if you were in a face-to-face meeting with people?
Treat the video call like a face-to-face meeting. Avoid moving around too much while you’re on the call. Remember that your video is on unless you turn it off so watch what you are doing and be sure that it is what you want people to see.
Try to have all meetings in a dedicated room to avoid distractions, such as dogs barking, housemates coming in etc.
Or at least keep your audio on mute until you’re talking. It’s good practice to keep your audio on mute at all times unless speaking (or in a 1-on-1 meeting). This way background noise and distractions will be eliminated and it’s one less thing for you to worry about.
Also, check out your background to make sure it is appropriate and professional or well suited to the occasion. You don’t want people to see your piles of washing in the background. Many sites now allow you to set up a virtual background so that they cannot see your real background.
Show your face
At least periodically during the meeting. People feel more connected if they can actually see each other. Plus, the host may want to see that you are in fact listening.
Check your tech
Make sure everything is running properly. Do some test runs before you start.
Wait for a pause before talking. This can be difficult on a video call since it is not as easy to see everyone to know who has interrupted the conversation. But try your best to wait for an opening before speaking over others.
Think about a video call like a face-to-face meeting. Professionalism is still key while you’re on a video meeting, whether it’s with a colleague you speak to all the time or an external meeting with clients. If you wouldn’t do something in a face-to-face meeting, don’t do it in a video meeting.
Don’t forget to smile! With all of these video meetings taking over our lives, a sense of humour and a smile can go a long way to making the meetings more pleasant for everyone!
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