Advancements in communication technology have led to access to more sophisticated and effective methods of communication. These electronic mediums have paved the way for corporations and businesses to connect with partners, investors and employees — especially during times of social distancing and lockdowns.
Technology has aided us in connecting with people anytime anywhere and in the communications world; it can be used in media conferences, investor meetings and press interviews.
Although many of us may miss actual human contact, there are various benefits to video conferencing. These include:
- helping to establish a rapport with people
- allowing others to get a stronger sense of who you are by seeing what you look like and what your body language says
- displaying pictures, graphs, PowerPoint presentations, videos and other computer files, and
- allowing for the recording of sessions for later reference.
Some people may struggle with understanding the software or hardware at first. One of the biggest hurdles is the awkwardness of still-developing social norms and technological glitches such as slow internet connection leading to delayed responses.
That being said, when video conferencing does work it can lead to genuine
connection. This is nevertheless dependant on how the tools are used and how one presents themself when using the tools.
Below is a guide for video conferencing etiquette:
- Test the equipment set up to ensure that your app or browser interface connects properly to your camera and any other attached equipment, such as speakers or microphones
- Be sure that your camera is properly positioned. A camera that is pointed too low or pointed somewhere else in the room can be both distracting and unflattering.
- When attending a video meeting while working from home, dress like you are in the office.
- Focus on the meeting; do not answer emails and text messages or talk to people in the room with you.
- Speak clearly and pronounce each word.
- Keep body movements minimal as hand movements can be distracting.
- Maintain eye contact by looking into the camera, and
- Keep in mind that you must be polite, confident, active and punctual.
- Do not shout if others cannot hear you; adjust the level on the microphone and make sure that it's not covered.
- Avoid interrupting others and rather wait for an opening in the conversation before speaking.
- Don't carry on side conversations; you would not do it in a face-to-face meeting, so you should not do it in a virtual one.
- Do not record meetings unless you have informed all participants that they are being recorded, and
- Do not eat while you are on a video conference.
Video conferencing has the ability to loop in entire departments and teams. These virtual meet-ups can replicate the feeling of being part of a group that stimulates the productive energy we are all looking for at the moment.
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