Before the pandemic hit, videoconferencing was already a fairly common means of communication for remote workers across different industries. In the midst of the pandemic, however, it’s become one of the most prevalent and convenient means of communicating with coworkers and, on a more personal note, family members and friends.
Despite the fact that you’re working from home, however, it’s still vital to maintain a professional appearance while conducting video calls and conferences. Whether you’re meeting with just one coworker or your entire staff, you want to make sure that everyone is completely comfortable and on the same page at all times.
Here are a few tips for how you can help make your at-home videoconferences look and sound a lot more professional, regardless of your geographical location.
Choose a Peaceful and Quiet Work Environment
Where you choose to set up your temporary or permanent workspace in your home makes a big difference. You’re going to want to choose a location that promotes a conducive and productive working environment. If you don’t have a spare bedroom or area where you can set up a makeshift office, then choose the next best spot in your house that has limited distractions where you can work in peace and quiet if that’s your jam.
Do your best to eliminate background noise, so that it doesn’t get picked up by your microphone during video or audio conference calls.
Set Up a Professional Home Office
Your home office can be anywhere in your home where you feel comfortable working, conducting meetings, and being productive. Just be aware of the fact that your coworkers can see and hear everything going on in the background during videoconferences through your webcam.
Try to remove any objects and noises that you don’t want your coworkers to see and hear during the meeting. Set up your at-home workspace in the same way or similar to how you would do it at your actual office. Make sure there are minimal objects visible in the background to eliminate potential distractions and exude an air of professionalism, especially if you’re holding a virtual client meeting and are trying to make a good impression.
Use High-Tech Equipment and Videoconferencing Tools
Have you ever had a video call or conference completely freeze up in the middle of an important meeting? We’ve all been there at one point or another.
Depending on how you look at it, it can be either humorous or extremely frustrating and inappropriate in the moment. Sometimes, it can take a while for the person to get back on the call and by that point, they’ve probably missed a lot of important topics of discussion. Moreover, videoconference freeze-ups waste a lot of time and can set you back as you now have to get in contact with the person who was cut off and catch them up on everything they missed.
Prevent this from happening by ensuring that you and your team are using high-tech and reliable videoconferencing equipment and platforms at all times. A strong Internet connection and state-of-the-art webcam and microphone are also essential.
Adjust Your Camera Settings
Working from home doesn’t always go exactly as planned. It’s certainly been a major adjustment for a lot of people who are accustomed to commuting to work every day. Even after all this time, many people are still figuring out the ropes and trying to get the right camera angles so their coworkers are none-the-wiser that their bottom halves don’t necessarily match their top halves.
Yes, by now it’s no secret that most people working from home are most likely wearing pajama pants instead of jeans or dress pants. Just make sure you adjust your camera settings and angle accordingly, so that your coworkers and clients can only see your top half and turn off your camera before getting up from your seat.
Plan Your Presentations Carefully
It can be challenging to keep coworkers, board members, and clients engaged during presentations even in the best of times. It’s even more challenging to do so when you have to do a virtual presentation that consists of visual components for a sizeable group when everyone is in different locations.
Virtual presentations need to be even more engaging and somewhat entertaining or interactive than in-person presentations. People’s attention spans are a lot shorter when they have to sit through a video presentation on their computers.
Maintain the attention of your coworkers and clients by keeping your presentations brief, to the point, using strong visual components that support your point of view, and allowing a question-and-answer period at the end.
Get the Lighting Right
Lighting is also an important visual component of videoconferences. When choosing a virtual meeting location in your home or a meeting space rental, make sure that the lighting is just right. Too much natural lighting can put a glare on your screen, making it difficult for you to see what’s going on. A lack of sufficient lighting, on the other hand, can make it hard for your coworkers or clients to adequately see you and make it hard for them to read your facial expressions and body language through the screen.
Choose a space that has just enough natural or artificial lighting to make the video call more visually satisfactory for everyone.
Test All of Your Equipment Before Each Meeting
This should go without saying, but it’s important to test out all of your technical equipment (webcam, microphone, headset, etc.) before each meeting to make sure everything is functioning properly. The last thing you want to happen is to have an equipment malfunction in the middle of an important meeting.
Rent a Meeting Rooms and Virtual Office Space in Mississauga
Innovative Professional Offices provides state-of-the-art remote virtual office spaces in Mississauga, as well as fully furnished meeting rooms and conference rooms, so that you can continue conducting your business remotely for as long as necessary. Contact us today to learn more and ask about getting a free quote for our virtual offices space and conference room rentals in Mississauga!