Video conferencing is becoming more important than ever before. As such, it’s important to know how you can set up whenever you’re supposed to be on a video conference call. It just doesn’t come naturally to most people to get in front of a camera and talk to people through the computer. Some people are self-conscious about the way they look or sound while others just are unaware what they’re doing can be seen by the people on the other end. Here are a few things you might want to take into consideration whenever you’re getting ready for your next video conference so it will go better.
Pay Attention to Your Surroundings
If you don’t have a dedicated video conference room, you’re going to have to make do with what you have. One of the things many people don’t give a lot of consideration to, according to The Huffington Post, is lighting. You need good lighting to be seen properly. For instance, if you decide you’re going to put yourself right in front of a window, you may end up showing up as a big black blob on the screen. This is because even when using great software from a company like Blue Jeans, it cannot control your camera or the light adjustments in the filters from your computer. The light from behind you will cause the camera to be less sensitive to light and you will not be seen at all. The light source should be above and behind the camera instead. You should also think about the wall behind you. If you have a design on the walls in your office or in your home, consider hanging something as your backdrop. This not only helps to keep the people you’re talking to from being distracted, it also helps to make sure you’re not getting lost in the background.
Prepare for the Meeting
Before you get started with any meeting, you want to prepare yourself for everything that’s about to occur within the meeting. Make sure you have all the notes about the subjects you’re going to talk about and any materials you’re going to need are within reach. According to Emily Post, if you have to leave the screen for any reason, it can be awkward for the people on the other end. Simply turning to reach for a notebook will allow you to still be on screen and still a part of the conversation, all while getting the materials you need to continue with the conversation.
Whenever possible, you should try to use digital visual aids for anything you want to talk about. If you try to talk about something on a visual aid you’re holding, you run the risk of the people on the other end not being able to see what it is you want for them to see. If you have everything where it can be displayed through the software Blue Jeans, or companies like it, provide then the people on the other side see exactly what it is you want them to see.
Make Sure You Have Enough Microphones
The main thing is you want for everyone on a call to be heard. According to Biz Tech Magazine, you should have at least one microphone for every two people. This way, if anyone is talking, they won’t have to lean in to speak, they can just speak at a normal conversational tone and everything they’re saying can be heard. Make sure the microphone is connected to software that filters out any kind of background noises. By isolating the sounds of the people talking, it will be less distracting for the people you’re talking to. Don’t trust the microphone on your computer to pick up everything. You need a stand microphone or one that drops from the ceiling to capture all the sounds in the room.
Test the Camera for Optimal Viewing
You need to be seen on the screen when you’re talking. As such, Entrepreneur suggests you test the camera before you place a call through a provider like Blue Jeans. If you don’t want to have someone sit in on the test, you can affix a picture of your face on the back of your chair at head height, or you can use a plush toy. It doesn’t matter what you use to test the camera. What matters is that the test is for something that is at the right height. You want to make sure that you can see where your head is supposed to be without having to lean forward. Make sure there is plenty of room above your head and to both sides as well as making sure that the camera cannot be seen in the shot. If the test is successful, you’re ready to make your video conference call. Just make sure you practice proper video conferencing etiquette while you’re on the call.