Continue the conversation about in-person conferencing vs. remote meetings. Why are some of them completely useless while others are so useful? Let’s see how you can get more out of these remote meetings.
TURN TO the conference camera.
You have a captive audience when you give a presentation at a live conference. In a virtual meeting, you have to look at the camera instead of the screen. Adjusting to this change may have taken some time. Now you have more people in the office and more distributed – you want to be attentive, watching from your live audience – then back to the camera. When you look at your screen, it looks like you’re not addressing anyone because of the camera angle. Whether you only have one other participant still working from home – keep assuming that the audience is the camera.
When it comes to notes, you can read from a note in your hands or from a computer screen. However, try to keep your eyes on the camera when you raise your head. Speaking without notes and remembering most of the content are absolute requirements professionality; don’t let cameras and notes distract you. Another bad habit is touching your face while looking at the camera.
Use fewer keyboards
When people use their keyboards in a video conference to take notes or perform other tasks, it doesn’t look good. To generate more ideas during meetings, it is best if everyone pays close attention and is psychologically present. A challenge can be your keyboard. Other team members may be annoyed by your fingers tapping the keyboard. One of the fundamentals of meetings is to use the keyboard less. If necessary, use a silent keyboard when taking notes or minutes in a meeting – and type only when absolutely necessary.
Even better, record the meeting during a video call and send the notes later. You can record one video conference screen using one of the best virtual conference programs. Be sure to ask for permission in advance, as the host of an extremely private video conference may prohibit recording.
Minimize conference movement
You might believe that since you can’t see the other players, your moves are meaningless. However, it is crucial to keep all your body movements to a minimum. Different meanings can be conveyed non-verbally. It is important to move your body as little as possible. Other players will get annoyed and distracted when you swing back and forth. Do not. A similar sign of discomfort or fatigue in your meetings is frequent chair changes.
Take a moment to relax
This isn’t just for the meeting hosts. During any conference, breaks should be kept to a minimum, but there should still be enough time for a relaxing break. However, if you are holding a long conference, it is essential to have a long break and to provide food. A five-hour live or virtual meeting with no breaks would not be pleasant. Your attendees will appreciate the opportunity to go to the bathroom, eat, relax or simply leave the event for a while. Keep in mind that exercise improves cognitive function welfare.
However, what time of day is ideal for a conference break? Consider the length of meetings and breaks when planning your meeting schedule. A meeting must last 52 minutes with a 17-minute break, according to Rules 52 and 17. This increases the productivity of the participants. You could change the timing. A meeting can be scheduled for 50 minutes with a break of 20 minutes, so a total of 70 minutes. Those are the rules, but in our company we keep most of our meetings to 30 minutes with no breaks, which works well for us.
Don’t eat in front of the camera. Avoid eating near a computer is one of the rules of computer use to avoid getting crumbs between the keys. Eating during a conference, whether virtual or not, can be perceived as unprofessional. Try to act as if you were meeting in person. Especially at one small conferencefood can be a great distraction.
Let people know before you leave the conference.
By pressing the exit button, you can leave the conference whenever you want. However, you should not ghost your participants. The host may invite you to speak or give a presentation. If they know you’re gone, they can exclude you from the conversation and choose another person to take on the duties.
There may be unforeseen circumstances that require you to leave the meeting. However, you must notify someone. An excellent choice is to send a chat message. Be as polite as possible and motivate your departure. In this situation, just close the video conferencing window and open it again when you come back.
Protect important information.
When presenting at the conference, you will probably need to share your screen with other participants. There may be unrelated files on your computer. It is unprofessional to share your screen with offensive material or unrelated material. Your company’s reputation can be damaged by inappropriate content. Make sure that only the things you want other meeting participants to see are visible when you share your screen. Also keep privacy in mind and don’t let customer data appear on your screen.
Close all unnecessary browser tabs and applications before starting a video call. Autocomplete results can be embarrassing if you share your entire desktop. Open another browser tab and make arrangements in advance to protect sensitive information. Instead of sharing your entire desktop, share a single screen or program. This gives you more power to influence how your audience views your content. Everything should revolve around you and your most important message – nothing else.
You should reasonably complete your online meeting in a professional manner. One of the tastier ways to achieve this is through a closing round, as promoted by Twitter and Medium co-founder Ev Williams. The idea of a closing round is fundamental. You only ask for closing remarks on the topics covered in the conference. This can be completed in 30 seconds or less. Everyone has the opportunity to give a question or complaint of a few seconds in the last round. As a host, you don’t have to say anything – and it will show that you value other points of view as a host.
You can then take a minute to emphasize the main points of the conference as the host – but don’t beat any point to death. Ideally, prepare your closing remarks in advance.
Finally, as the host of the conference, you should be the last to leave, as you may be ending the broadcast yourself. It can be considered rude to end a video call while someone else is still on. Say a happy goodbye, so that others are left with a good feeling.
Image credit: Photo by Katerina Bolovtsova; Pexels; Thank you!