Without direct contact, many businesses may be facing difficulty adapting to virtual correspondence. Nowadays, the next best thing is a video conference. While a simple conference call may be well within the comfort zone for several businesses, there is something undeniably more intimate and impactful about face-to-face conversation. However, the sudden switch to a new method of correspondence does not come without complications. Read up on our advice for mastering your video conferences from beginning to end.
- Advertise early. Plan to send out an email with the necessary meeting codes, links, dates, and times as soon as you are aware of the event and leading up to the event itself to keep your business at the top of a busy inbox.
- Dress professionally. Your video should always stay on, so you’ll want to give yourself enough time to get ready as you normally would for in-person meetings.
- Minimize distractions. If you plan on sharing your screen, be sure to delete any unnecessary tabs beforehand and disable pop-up ads. Additionally, if someone plans on sharing their screen, make sure you have that setting enabled for them.
- Do a test run. Find a quiet area with minimal distractions and an appropriate background. Familiarize yourself with the technology and make sure your sound / video come across well.
- Lead the pack. If your business opts out of a virtual waiting room, prepare to lead a conversation while people join the call. Have a list of targeted questions or conversation starters on hand to kick off the meeting without uncomfortable silence. You should also be ready to mediate questions and transition points throughout the call to maximize engagement and efficiency.
- Establish guidelines. Will you be using the chat window for questions, or can people speak regularly? How long will the conference run? Now is also a good time to remind participants to turn their video on and mute themselves when they are not speaking.
- Look up. Your audience is your camera. Participants can tell when you are reading notes either off screen or on another tab. If notes are unavoidable, make sure to look at the camera as you would look up during normal meetings.
- Give a definite indicator that the call is ending. Provide a brief overview of all the important topics discussed, address any next steps, and thank participants for joining.
- Stay behind. It may be beneficial to offer to stay on the call for any further questions. This way, you ensure that no one has left the call with unresolved concerns.
- Once the call has officially ended, dedicate some time to go over what went well and what to correct for next time. Every conference has room for improvement, and it is likely that virtual correspondence will continue to play a large role when businesses reopen.