*Originally published on CEPro.com
Small business owners looking to make a better impression during a videoconference should pay attention to fine details like having good lighting and choosing the right display name.
By this time, we have all been on at least one virtual meeting. For many of us, we count ourselves lucky to only be on one virtual meeting a day, and we are now in an environment that caters to the use of webcams and computers.
While the technology is advancing and the systems are smoothing out, there is still plenty you can do to improve these remote gatherings, business or personal, to improve your attendees’ videoconferencing experience.
3 Ways to Improve Your Video Conferences
#1: AUDIO OVER VIDEO
A meeting can be held without video (although it’s not suggested) but a meeting NEEDS good audio. Everyone needs to be heard.
We aren’t all so lucky to have been able to get our hands on a professional microphone before virtual meetings became a trend, and some of us are still waiting for the backorders to be filled. If you are stuck with the computer microphone and speakers, or at least you think you are, a simple piece of equipment can drastically change the audio of your meeting. A pair of headphones with a built-in microphone will help eliminate background noise and increase the clarity and volume of your voice.
#2: LIGHTS CAMERA ACTION
Be mindful of your surroundings, lighting is key and if you are not in a well-lit room your image will be very dark and hard to see. Windows are another source of good natural light but please don’t sit in front of a window. This causes the iris of the camera to close and creates a dark image.
When speaking, look at the camera and not the computer screen. It will create a more natural meeting for those on the far end.
Most mainstream platforms for virtual meetings all have built-in options to change what is behind you. From blurring the background to putting you in a completely different room, have fun and be creative but don’t be obnoxious.
Give your fellow meeting attendees something different to see. If you can’t change the room you are in, then a simple web search for “virtual meeting backgrounds” will produce a variety of options. Just remember to turn off the cat filter before your next meeting.
#3: IT’S ALL ABOUT THE DETAILS
Pay attention to your display name. During internal meetings, everyone knows who you are, so your display name isn’t top of mind. When you are meeting with industry partners, potential clients, or anyone else outside of your company, it is best to change your display name to your first and last name followed by your company name. This will help others remember who you are and where you work, helping avoid that awkward question of “where are you from?”
Everyone is limited on time. The notion that working from home and having extra time has been proven to be false. Many people feel like they have more time yet more work. Virtual meetings take up a lot of time so being prepared for every meeting will help make the most out of everyone’s time. Going into every meeting, know what you can offer and what you need help with. Stay on track and try to move the personal conversations to the end of the meeting.
Virtual meetings are here to stay and using these three tips will create a much better experience for you and your meeting attendees. In the end, a successful meeting will equate to a more productive and pleasant working environment.