Tips for Better Video Conferencing Part 3: On the Road
Not too long ago, the clients a firm worked with were mostly limited to their geographic location. A firm might work with a few clients on a long-distance basis, but the need to exchange paper meant it wasn’t really practical to have a client base spread out across the country. Now, technology has eliminated the barriers to working with remote clients, and video conferencing allows firms to stay connected with “face-to-face” communication no matter where they’re located.
That’s great, but some people find chatting in a video conference uncomfortable. From worrying about how you’ll look to dealing with outside distractions and technical difficulties, it can be hard to relax and focus on the conversation.
Today we’re sharing some tips for better video conferencing while on the road or traveling.
Location While traveling, you may not have as much control over your background as you would while video conferencing from your home or office. But you should make an effort to find a location that is as clean and free of distractions as possible. Video conferencing from a hotel room is a probably one of the best options. Just be sure to position the camera so there is a wall behind you rather than a bed or a window.
Coffee shops are often loud and full of remote workers and their laptops so the wi-fi may be sluggish at best. If you plan on conducting a video conference from a coffee shop, scope out the location ahead of time, preferably at the same time of day that your meeting will take place, to ensure it won’t be overcrowded and loud.
Other potential options are hotel lobbies and public libraries, where you may be able to reserve a private study or meeting room. For VIP clients, you may consider booking a meeting room at a co-working space.
Connection Free wi-fi is more widely available than it has been in the past, but it’s not always the most reliable. Test your internet connection well in advance of the meeting. When in doubt, know how to use your smartphone as a personal hotspot so you can use that in a pinch.
Whenever possible, don’t schedule a video conference while you’re in motion. You’ll run a higher risk of losing connectivity.
Remember Your Time Zones Your video conference may include participants from different time zones and even different countries, so make sure to consider where everyone is located and pick a time that’s convenient for everyone involved.
Be extra careful about time zones when you’re sending calendar invitations. Selecting an incorrect time zone will cause confusion and may adversely affect the productivity of the meeting.
Your device Try not to use a handheld device for video conferencing. No matter how hard you try to hold it still, shaking will create a blurry image and distract other participants. If you have to use your phone or tablet, find a place where you can use a stand so your device is stable.
Also, do your best to make sure the camera is straight in front of you instead of looking up at you. It’s a more flattering angle, and the other meeting participants won’t be looking up your nose.
People better remember what they see as opposed to what they hear. Invest a little time and effort to ensure your video conferences leave clients with a lasting impression of your professionalism and polish!
Stay tuned for more tips for looking your best on camera!
As the Marketing Manager for Boomer Consulting, Inc., Heather’s primary focus is on developing the firm’s marketing strategy and brand awareness to help drive business results. She manages and executes marketing and business development initiatives, with daily oversight of the website, social media, and thought leadership content. In addition, as a part of the Business Development team, she provides leadership and strategic planning on marketing and communication practices for the firm.