Video Conference Etiquette – Covid has forced most organizations and schools to join meetings, training, and events via Video Conference platforms like Zoom, Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, etc.
Not knowing the Video conference etiquette can cause embarrassment and sometimes even regret, which will stay for long. I have put together some simple etiquette to help you have a good experience during a Video conference meeting or training.
Teaching these to your children will ensure they are well-versed with the dos and don’ts of Video conferencing.
Did you know? – 30 percent of those who responded to the survey stated that they work for a fully remote company. And that the number of daily active users of one of the video conference software Microsoft Teams alone has doubled from last year, It has increased from 75 million users in April 2020 to around 145 million as of April 2021. Source 1 and Source 2
List of 14 top Etiquette to follow during a Video conference meeting
01. Join on time
This is the most underestimated etiquette of Video conferences. It would be best to track when the meeting or dialog starts. Ensure to join the discussion on time. Joining late gives the organizer an impression that you are not interested or very casual about essential meetings.
Joining late for the Video conference will also annoy the participants already on the call. You may also miss the initial introduction of the topic or the agenda, causing you to ultimately not understand the session.
2. Mute when not talking
You will need to cultivate this habit to ensure you have a fruitful video conference meeting. Unmute only when you need to talk else; stay muted. Remember that the microphone is very sensitive and can pick up even the slightest sound and amplify them to the participants on the call. This cannot be very comfortable.
Things like children playing, the street sound, and the TV in the other room may get transmitted on the call. This is especially true when working from home. Hence ensure to mute when not talking.
There have been embarrassing moments when a participant forgot to mute and took the other call on the phone; the participants on the Video conference call could hear it all.
Imagine what can transmit in the mic if you are not on Mute. I hope you get the idea.
3. Use a proper laptop, headphones, mic, camera, and stable internet connection
As you would agree, technology has enabled us to join calls from anywhere. However, not using the right electronics can ruin your experience of the meeting. It can also cause disturbance to the participants on the call. Always check your internet connection, Headset, camera, and mic before the call.
A lousy internet will cause breakage in voice and Video. A bad headphone mic can cause static sound for everyone.
4. Wear appropriate clothing
Dress for the occasion. This is an old saying. The same holds when joining a video conference session. For example, wear formal clothes and groom well to look presentable to the participants, especially when entering an office call. The same holds for your child joining school online too. Ensure general home wear is not worn.
5. Position the camera correctly
Ensure the camera is correctly positioned to capture you in the frame. Also, ensure the camera is also capturing your environment. Be conscious of the things around you. Keep the room tidy to provide an elegant view for the participants on the other site.
Turn off the camera if not required. This will ensure less bandwidth is consumed from your internet, and the Video conference software will give preference to your audio and screen sharing, if any.
6. Pay attention and keep eye contact
Ensure you maintain eye contact with the camera throughout the meeting. Everyone watches the screen; therefore, you must stay attentive and focus on the net. Avoid moving around, as it will distract the people on the call.
7. Speak clearly into the mic
Ensure the microphone or Headset’s mouthpiece is close enough to transmit your voice. Do not keep the mic too near or too far from your mouth. Speak clearly; you may want to check with the participant if they can hear you clearly before speaking at length.
Many Video conference software allows you to pre-check your headphone and mic before the call. It is a good idea to perform these checks before joining the call.
8. Check your environment
As far as possible, try to be in a quiet surroundings. It may not always be possible to find a calm place. Therefore, you can use the mute button when not speaking and unmute when talking.
Ensure the area captured by the camera is clean, tidy, and not cluttered. You may want to check your environment before the call starts.
Avoid people moving around you during the call, as this can cause a distraction to the participants on the call.
9. Avoid eating during the Video conference call
Eating during a VC call will not only distracts everyone but also reveals that you are not fully attentive on the call. Sipping Tea, Coffee, or drinking water is acceptable during the ring, but avoid eating.
10. Do not interrupt others when they are talking
This etiquette should be followed in any conversation, especially in a VC meeting. Let the opposite persons finish talking, after which you can put your point of view. This will also ensure there is no crosstalk which usually confuses the call.
11. Be careful when messaging
Be careful when messaging someone on the call. You may mistakenly send it to the wrong person or everyone in the group unknowingly.
Do not message someone whose screen is being shared; otherwise, your message will appear on the presenter screen and be visible to all.
12. Screen Sharing etiquette
Ensure you do not share your entire desktop when sharing your screen, as unnecessary popups and messages appear and be visible to all.
Most commonly used Video conferences software like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Meet, and Webex allows you to only share selected windows instead of the entire desktop.
If you need to share your entire desktop, ensure to sign out from messaging software and emails so that they do not pop up during the screen-sharing session.
13. Recording ettiquettes
Recording is a very convenient feature of any video conference software. It helps you record the complete meeting, which can be preserved for further reference. It can also be shared with those who cannot attend.
However, ensure to inform the participants before starting the recording. In many countries, it is a requirement to notify the participants of call recording.
14 Remember to disconnect from VC after the call
Remember to disconnect from the call after finishing the meeting. This is probably one of the most important etiquettes of Video conference calls.
Keeping the call run after the meeting can be disastrous for apparent reasons; Make it a habit to disconnect from the ring when done.
If you are the moderator or the organizer, ensure to end the session so that all get automatically disconnected at the end of the VC call.
With the advent of Covid, businesses, and schools worldwide are using technology like Video conferences to enable employees or students to work from the comfort of their homes. Working from home benefits organizations in saving costs. It also benefits employees as they can save on travel time and cost. It’s a win-win situation for both. Video conference is an enabler in this direction. These are the etiquette that no one teaches. However, it is best to be aware of these to benefit from these technologies and make your day-to-day activities enjoyable.