If you are new to online virtual meetings, you may not know how to act, what to wear, and so forth. Below are some etiquette tips to help you have positive virtual meetings for you and the other participants!
Before Your Virtual Meeting
DRESS TO IMPRESS
Not all virtual meetings or video conference calls are created equal and your outfits should match the expectations of your audience. If it is just you chatting with family and friends, you could probably get away wearing what ever you would like. However, with your co-workers, it’s probably best to follow your companies dress code. Wear what would be appropriate if the meeting were face-to-face.
CHECK VIDEO & AUDIO QUALITY
Nowadays, most computers have a built-in video and audio system. Adjust your camera if it is too low or high – ideally, it should be at eye level. Try to hold virtual meetings in quiet areas to control noise and other distractions such as pets and children.
FIX YOUR LIGHTING
Position yourself so most of the light is coming from in front of you, rather than behind you. Try adjusting lamps, closing window blinds, and moving your camera until you can see your brightly-lit face on the screen.
THINK ABOUT YOUR BACKGROUND
Before any meetings, try to clean around and behind your workspace to provide a clean, simple background. You don’t want to share a messy room with your audience.
USE A VIRTUAL BACKGROUND
If you are working in an area that isn’t ideal for virtual meetings, try using the virtual background feature. It will allow you to upload and display images and videos as your background during a meeting. Consider having your virtual background be an office setting that is work-appropriate, unless there is a scheduled “theme” designated.
SHARE YOUR SCREEN
Before your meeting, open up any needed documents you may need to share. Otherwise, you may accidentally share unwanted or confidential content with your co-workers. When sharing your screen, try not share longer than necessary, as it may reduce the quality of video feeds for others.
BE ON TIME
As with any meeting, online or in-person this is standard. However, when you are in a virtual meeting, it is very important to be on time, as you are more visible joining. Before the meting starts, log-on a few minutes early to test your video and audio settings.
During Your Virtual Meeting
LOOK AT THE CAMERA
When you are speaking, you should look at the camera. It may be difficult, but this will mimic the in-person feeling of eye contact.
MUTE YOUR MICROPHONE
If applicable, use the “Mute Microphone” feature. When you are listening, remember to mute yourself. This will help cut down on any feedback. If there is a back-and-forth discussion, keep your microphone on so you can participate in the conversation.
THINK ABOUT YOUR ACTIONS
When you are in a virtual meeting… remember that everyone can see you! Extra movements such as yawning, or checking your phone can be distracting to others and disruptive to the speaker. Try to stay still, pay attention and take notes, as you would at the office.
Notifications from text messages, or a phone ringing, and other applications can be distracting. This may also make others attending the virtual meeting feel disrespected and may get distracted also. Eliminating these distractions prior to the meeting will help keep everyone focused and uninterrupted.
During a real in-person meeting you generally wouldn’t stop to eat a full meal. The same applies to virtual meetings. If the meeting is scheduled during your lunch break, plan accordingly and eat before or after.
During virtual meetings, try to avoid checking your phone, your inbox, or any other computer distractions. This will help you listen and participate better during the discussion.
STICK AROUND (IF YOU ARE THE HOST)
If you are the host of the virtual meeting, is it best for you to stay last before hanging up. This way attendees say any final words in before disconnecting.
BE YOURSELF AND HAVE FUN!
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