One thing that hasn’t changed with our new normal of working remotely is that first impressions are still everything. Whether you’re pursuing a new business lead or contributing to a visual interview or presentation, looking fresh is only part of acing video meetings. Everyone is in agreement that initial in-person meetings and interviews are ideal, but during COVID-19, we’re all resorting to second best. Improve your first impressions during video conferences with these 5 helpful tips.
- Who are you wearing? Although you may feel comfortable sporting a casual look for internal meetings, take your look in a more professional direction when you’re meeting someone for the first time. With that in mind, you don’t want to appear too stuffy or out of place. Consider wearing a solid color sweater or collared shirt instead of a hoodie or 3-piece suit. Also, you don’t have to load up on makeup, but it doesn’t hurt to take the extra minute to run a comb through your hair.
- What’s behind you? Be mindful of your background. Place yourself in front of a solid background or one that isn’t too busy or filled with distractions. If you’re using Zoom for your video conference, try one of their standard backgrounds or see how we created customized backgrounds for our clients. In addition to your background, good lighting is key. Natural light is the best, but avoid having your primary light source behind you. You don’t want your prospect to think you’re meeting with them from an actual bunker.
- Are you ready for your closeup? Once you’re looking great, well lit and have a suitable backdrop, place your computer camera at eye level. Open your video meeting app to test your look before starting the live stream. If the app you’re using doesn’t have a video preview, consider using FaceTime or Photobooth to catch a glimpse.
- What’s that sound? Set yourself up in a space with minimal noise from outside or other people in the house. When you’re not speaking, mute yourself if there’s unwanted sounds on your end. Pro Tip: When you’re muted on Zoom, hold down the spacebar to temporarily unmute yourself so you don’t have to search with your mouse to turn on your microphone.
- Can you see my screen? Enable screen share settings before the meeting starts. That way you’re able to share your screen immediately without fumbling through settings in real time. Not only will this tip help streamline the meeting, but it will enhance your first impression by showing off your tech-savvy skills.
Lastly, don’t forget that you’re on camera. They can see you so please act as if you’re sitting across from each other in a conference room – avoid eating, looking off camera or multitasking. Kick off a relationship with a prospective client on the right foot by producing a seamless video conference meeting. For more information about how to dress for a video appearance, please read our blog post.
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