We’re connecting online more than ever using platforms like Zooms and Microsoft Teams and streaming live on social media. Follow these virtual etiquette tips to make the most of your next virtual meeting.
Before you login, check your space. You want to be in a quiet space with a clean background that doesn’t have too many distractions behind you. If you don’t want to show your room for any reason, you could try a virtual background. Zoom allows you to upload your own. We have free beach backgrounds you can download on VisitMyrtleBeach.com.
If possible, sit where most of the light is facing you, not behind you to make sure people can see you clearly on video.
No matter what device or software you’re meeting on, make sure you’ve got the latest version downloaded before the meeting starts. This ensures you have access to the latest settings, and more importantly, current security settings.
Treat the meeting like an in-person meeting wherever possible, including your attire. Unless it’s a breakfast or lunch meeting, it’s probably best not to eat.
Pay attention and be present. Avoid multi-tasking and other distractions. Keeping focus on the meeting or webinar allows you to retain the information easier. Consider silencing your phone and disabling notifications on your computer. If it’s especially hard to stay focused, you may want to close your email inbox, or switch to full-screen mode on the meeting.
How many times have you heard, “Please put your mic on mute?” If you’re not speaking, you should use that mute button. Did you know, if you’re using Zoom, you can press the space bar while on mute to temporarily unmute yourself. You may need to enable this feature in the settings.
Of course, the inverse is also true. “You’re on mute” is the new “Can you hear me now?”
Mute is your friend! Make sure you mute your microphone when not speaking, but don’t forget to unmute when you want to talk.
Turn your video on when possible, especially if you’re the meeting host or actively speaking.
When you’re speaking, try to look into the camera instead of at yourself on the screen. This helps give the same sense of eye contact you would give in-person.
When on Zoom, take a quick look at the video settings. Adjust for low light if you need to. Video settings are also where you change virtual backgrounds.
Pack your patience and empathy. We all adjust to changes at different paces. Be patient with those still navigating the virtual realm and learning what’s best for them.
If you’re a new host, consider practice runs. Make sure you know how to share your screen and are comfortable with in-meeting controls.
Graphics by Caroline Murray
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