Virtual Meetings are the new normal and finally everyone is using their video webcams. This new way of meeting will continue to evolve as new virtual meeting services come online alongside Zoom, Skype, Google Hangouts, or WebEx. Pope Communications believes virtual communications coaching is key to ensure success and our clients are taking advantage of it more than ever before.
Pope Communications offers virtual coaching in the following areas:
For meetings with large groups of people, you must ensure that the technology works and troubleshoot in advance. If possible, set up a test meeting in advance with the key presenters and test the screen share. Practice the presentations online for each other to ensure a seamless team approach.
If you can find one, purchase a higher quality webcam. Most webcams on laptops or desktops are not positioned well and often the quality is lacking. An external camera can be positioned so it is at eye level or slightly higher which is more flattering. If you want to look your best, a high-quality external camera can help a lot however many of them are sold out because of the increase in working from home.
Take the time to find the best background for your camera shot. Pull up your video setting and check the boxes for “Enable HD” and “Touch up my Appearance”. Make sure your background is not cluttered and that you are not backlit by windows. Avoid as much distraction in the background as possible. Virtual backgrounds look artificial and can be distracting. Some of them even look unprofessional.
If you have to look too far left or right to view the other participants, you will not appear to be talking to them directly. You will be looking away from your camera and not have good eye contact. You can position the video of participants typically with the control in the upper right corner where you can choose “gallery view”, “full-screen view”, or other options.
It is harder to keep the audience engaged during virtual meetings. People fatigue after a couple of hours and distractions like email and other messages can interfere. Some clients of ours have said they’ve been stuck in 4 and 6-hour meetings which are way too long. You must give people a break. Have an agenda and stick to it. Finish up discussions and make decisions then wrap up. Your team will be much more productive!