This year, there are very few people across the world who have not had to adapt to managing, being managed, keeping in contact with clients and even making new business connections and sales via video call or conferencing.
The rapid global adoption of Zoom saw its value as a company double, almost overnight.
The replacement of face-to-face meetings by video has happened very rapidly and there is every indication that virtual meetings are here to stay, regardless of what “normal” is in the future.
By being aware of the basics, and making sure you and your team stick to them, is the difference in projecting a professional image, or not.
In our experience, particularly in the last 3 months, we have seen these points to be consistently important.
- Firstly, it is an unforgiving and demanding medium, so being prepared is vital. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that you can “wing it”, it is actually more demanding than a live meeting. Always have relevant detail and information at hand.
- It goes without saying that you need to be on time, or slightly early.
- When the meeting starts realise that you are visible to all, even in a big meeting.
- The list of don’ts include eating, drinking, taking phone calls, sloppy body language and interrupting.
- The most important “do” is to show that you are listening and engaged; this means looking the camera instead of yourself. Also do your best to show your work environment as neat and tidy. In big meetings mute your microphone until you speak.
- When you speak, do your best to stay on topic, speak a bit slower than normal and try and be as clear as possible.
If you are the host, be particular about:
- Welcoming people as they join.
- Introducing people to each other if they haven’t met before.
- Introducing the topic and reason for the meeting.
- Do what you can to keep everyone involved and as far as is comfortable, control comments and the asking of questions.
- Sum up at the end and confirm action points and people accountable (these should always be confirmed in a mail as well).
- And like a good host, wait for everyone to leave before you do.
Getting proficient on video is not difficult at all and is really common sense. But when you don’t follow the basics it has a way of projecting an unprofessional image and can result in meetings that are unproductive and, even worse, detrimental to your personal brand.
DISCLAIMER: The material and information contained in this article is for general information purposes only. You should not rely upon the material or information in this article as the basis for making any business, legal or other decisions.