Around one in four Americans are currently working remotely, and that means one important thing for communication - the vast majority of it is being carried out online with the help of video conferencing. Conferences and calls via video saw a 535% rise in 2020, with 90% of people surveyed saying they found it easier to get their points of view across through video. 76% of employees are currently using video conferencing for remote work. If you and your employees are currently relying heavily on video conferencing, it is important to set up norms regarding proper procedure and etiquette. The following are just a few tips that you and your team may find useful.
Punctuality Is The Key
All participants to a video conference should be on time and ready for a pre-scheduled call. This means they should set up their equipment and pertinent apps prior to the conference, testing out the functionality of apps with colleagues beforehand. Aspects such as cameras, screens and microphones should all be in proper working order so that vital time isn’t lost changing mics or computers, looking for lost passwords, or setting up cameras. Participants should also ideally be informed beforehand of how long the conference will last so they can schedule other tasks and obligations they have that day.
Moderation And Organization
If a formal video conference will be taking place between several people, then an agenda should be formalized and communicated to participants beforehand. This will ensure that everyone is well prepared and has pertinent information (and questions) at hand. A moderator should lead the talk, indicating turns (if required) for talks, discussions and debates. The moderator can also ensure that people don’t speak over each other (so that communication is always clear enough for someone to take down minutes for the meeting). If minutes will be taken, then recording the conference is a good idea, and all main services (Zoom, Skype, and Google Meet) have recording features. If you will be recording the communication, then all participants should be informed beforehand.
Wearing Appropriate Attire And Jewelery
People may be working from home, but during video conference calls (especially those taken part in with clients), it is important for your team to dress to industry-appropriate standards. If you operate in the legal or accounting industries, for instance, then a shirt and jacket (even a tie if the meeting will be client-oriented and formal) may be the norm. Wearing formal attire does not mean you cannot express yourself through fashion, of course. Even if you are in a tech, legal, or business-focused industry, self-expression is vital, and you can achieve it by wearing the accessories you would normally wear in the workplace, such as brooches, or jewelry that suits a business call. A bit of shimmer via delicate necklaces, minimalist earrings, and fine bracelets won’t wrest attention away from important matters. Moreover, they will display your personality and creativity, which can mark you as an innovative thinker who knows how to balance fashion and business to perfection.
Creating A Silent Space
Working from home can have its downsides - including noise from pets and other family members. Choose a quiet spot for your call, and if you will be conducting frequent video conferences, set up a home office that only you can access during key moments such as these. If unexpected noises arise (for instance, if your dog begins to bark when someone rings the doorbell) use the mute function to eliminate the noise. Software such as Zoom allows you to hold the spacebar to temporarily unmute yourself during moments in which you wish to contribute to the call.
Video conferences and calls have grown in number and importance over the past year and a half. In order to keep things business-like, staff and managers should take care with aspects such as punctuality and attire. They should also ensure that the space they are calling from is silent and tidy so that professionally is always at the forefront of any communication.