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With the widespread usage of virtual meeting applications such as Zoom or Google Hangouts, and a global pandemic keeping employees working remotely, the Video Conference Call is taking over the office sector as the preferred method of communication. Here are some etiquette tips you can try out to ensure a successful video conference with your coworkers or prospective clients.

Make Sure Your Tech Works

Before committing to a conference call, see if you can ensure your tech set-up is functioning properly and up to the task of conducting a professional meeting. Try to work out the kinks beforehand by running a trial call with a coworker or friend to ensure sound and video quality settings are where you want them to be. It could make a not-so-good first impression if the video conference starts off by solving tech issues. Try to make your meetings as organized and professional as possible. Consider upgrading your current set-up so that it doesn’t sound like you are entering the Matrix every time you speak and that it doesn’t look like you are being filmed by an Etch-A-Sketch!

Be Courteous

Another idea is to set the video conference time yourself and then be on time for the meeting. Punctuality online should be no less important than for a physical meeting. Before starting, take your time to become familiar with everyone’s name on the call and introduce yourself. If you don’t, it could be difficult to direct your questions to a specific person because they won’t know that you are speaking directly to them. Interrupting someone who is speaking is a common, irritating problem on a video call. See if you can wait until whoever is speaking to finish their thought before speaking. If you have a question, consider messaging it out rather than cutting in to speak. Remember to look into the camera so it seems like you are making eye contact and being attentive to the conversation.

Be Professional

Although you may be conducting a meeting from the comfort of your own home, it is important to make sure that you keep things professional. This means changing out of your house robe and dressing professionally as if you were going in to work physically. Try your best to frame your camera in a tasteful setting that is professional. Consider that the best background is one that doesn’t feature an unmade bed or a pile of dirty laundry.

Do Not Be Distracting

With multiple screens showing everyone on the call, it is important to try to minimize distractions on your own frame. This means keeping your background simple and not busy. Try to sit still and make minimal movements. If there comes a time in a meeting where you do not need to provide verbal input, try muting your microphone to cut down on background noise. See if you can work in a separate room from your pets and children so that when it is time for you to speak everyone remains focused on you as a speaker, and not your dog doing cartwheels off the couch.

Follow these tips and your video conference call will be a success! Proper etiquette is a huge asset for your business’s image and professionalism. Enjoy the convenience of the digital world and prosper with the latest in virtual meetings.