Test all your audio and visual equipment before calls
The last consideration for conducting a successful virtual meeting is the prep you do before the call starts. It’s considered impolite to force everyone to wait on you in the middle of the meeting while you adjust your camera or correct your sound.
Before the meeting starts, check to see that your microphone, headphones, lighting, camera, and speakers are all working. Ten minutes before the start of the call, do a quick check to ensure your tech is in order. Most video conferencing software and apps give you the ability to check your equipment before joining the call, but if that isn’t available, call a friend and get their feedback on how you look and sound.
You may also want to check your internet speed. Platforms such as Skype have minimum speed requirements depending on the complexity of the call. There are sites where you can conduct speed tests to make sure you have the optimal setup.
Along with checking your audio and video tech and internet speed, you should clean up your background for the call. When you’re testing your camera, look at the space around and behind you. Remove highly reflective items such as mirrors or picture frames, as their glass can reflect light into the camera or allow others to see parts of your home you didn’t intend for them to see. Consider using a filter or a blurred background for calls to clean up the visuals.
Make sure your camera isn’t too close to your face. Experts recommend positioning yourself so you are seen from the chest or waist up. You might also consider standing for the call, as this tends to make you more charismatic when presenting.
Finally, consider recording yourself and watching the playback to see how you come across. You will want to ask permission from the other participants to record the meeting, but watching your performance will provide valuable feedback on what you can do better for the next meeting.
“25% of the 18 to 29 age group use video calls for work every day.” — Globe Newswire
The key to effective virtual meetings is to always be aware of how things are working on your end — your equipment, your environment, and your behavior. Awareness is your superpower for helping you avoid video call disasters and becoming a virtual meeting meme.
For more information on making the best impression on a call, check out our course on Telephone Etiquette.
This is one of our executive briefings taken from our series of professional online business short courses from ELL. We have over 150 courses online with over 1,000 hours of e-learning covering a wide range of topics across leadership, management and personal & professional development created by industry experts and learning professionals.