The Do’s and Don’ts of WFH Video Calls

So, here we are working from home (WFH) and riding out these unusual times during the COVID-19 crisis.   And with this new reality, video conference calls, both, profession and personal are at an all-time high.  For some of you, video conferencing is a new addition to your work life and may take some getting used to.

And even if video calls are not new to you, there are definite do’s and don’t that apply.

 

Video Conferencing Do’s

  1. Come Prepared:  This includes knowing your way around the technology.   This includes knowing how to turn on (and off) your video, making sure your audio is working and learning how to share your screen.  Practice, watch You-Tube videos, Google the instructions.   This also includes making sure your devices are charged up and will stay charged throughout the call.  When you suddenly disappear, we worry! 
  2. Look Presentable:  Even though you are at home, you want to look presentable and put together.  Try to put your camera at face height (too high or low can be unflattering and distracting.)  And please, wear pants!  (Enough said.)
  3. Introduce Yourself:  When you are in group calls, it is important to introduce yourself and also know who else is on your call.  Please wait your turn to speak and it’s always a good idea to make a hand gesture to let people know it’s your turn to talk.  It is appreciated! 
  4. Mute Appropriately: Make sure to mute when you are not talking.  Microphones are notorious for picking up and amplifying background noise.  And remember to unmute when you are talking.  We are not that good at lip-syncing yet.
  5. Stay Focused: It’s fine to make chit chat at the start of your call, but please stay mindful of everyone’s time and prepare and stick to an agenda. It also helps to look at the camera which makes us believe you are looking at us.

 

Video Conferencing Don’ts

  1. No Dirty Laundry Please: Be aware, very aware of what your viewers see behind you.  The last thing you want is for people to see your unmade bed, dirty laundry, piles of dishes or anything else that shouldn’t be seen.  Because really. 
  2. Accidentally Share Thing On Your Screen: If you share your screen, make sure you have open only the things you want to be shared.  Trust me on this one!
  3. Text and Do Other Things: Remember that we can see you.  So if you are texting, writing emails, reading or just plain old spacing out, everyone will know.   And puleeeeze, do not walk around while you are on the call.  It makes us all very dizzy when you do that.
  4. Have Side Conversations: Plan your on-air time with any other household members so that that you are not interrupted. Put your phone on do-not-disturb, and keep your conversation focused on the video call only.  We can hear you….. and them!
  5. Eating During The Call:  Whatever you do, don’t eat during video meetings.  It’s noisy, distracting and well, kinda gross.  Seriously gross.

If you have do’s or don’ts to share or funny and even embarrassing video moments, please share in the comments below!

Until the next time,

 

Vivienne

 

 

 

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