Virtual meetings have become huge over the past year, and they’re here to stay. Even after we can gather in groups again, customers may still opt for the convenience of a virtual meeting rather than an in-person meeting. This means you might be making your first impression through a computer screen rather than in person. Make sure that the first impression is still a good one with these tips.
A Room with a Door
There’s always some kind of noise happening in most job shops. Make sure that you’re able to take video calls in a room with a door to shut out noise. Background noise might not sound that loud to you, but it may be louder through your mic and could potentially drown out what you’re saying.
Having a room with a door can also stop interruptions. Whether you’re at home and you need to keep children or pets out of the room, or at work and you need to keep coworkers at bay, a closed door with a note on it can work wonders. If your desk at work isn’t in a room with a door, consider making an office into a conference room so you or others can use that room for video calls.
Lighting is critical in virtual meetings. You want the people on the other end to be able to see you clearly. Most rooms are not set up for clear lighting on video calls, but it’s relatively easy to fix. Overhead lights are great for putting more light in the room. Ring lights or desk lights are great for putting enough light on you that the people you’re calling can see your face. You don’t have to point a lightbulb directly at you, you don’t want to blind yourself, after all! But it does help to have a light near the camera and your face to make sure there aren’t odd shadows. Most video call programs will give you the option to see how you look before you get on the call. Take a moment before each meeting to make sure you can be seen clearly.
The microphone built into most computers isn’t that great. Having an external microphone that you plug into your computer can make it easier for other people to hear you, even if you don’t get a high-end microphone. However, if you have an external mic and use your computer’s speakers, the people you’re talking to will likely hear an echo or feedback. Prevent this from happening by getting a headset. You can get a big headset with headphones that cover your ears, or even just a pair of headphones with a microphone in them. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to sound much clearer on calls, and to hear other people more clearly.
Quick Access to Data
We’ve all been on phone calls where it’s taken us a little longer to find something than we thought. If you’re on the phone, you have the option of putting someone on hold, and they can’t see you scrambling to find whatever you need. On a video call, you can’t put them on hold, and they can see everything. It’s easier to look professional on video calls when you have everything you need at your fingertips. One great way to have your data at your fingertips is by using an ERP system. You’ll have all the data you need in one place on your computer, instead of having to open up file cabinets or go out to the shop floor.
2020 brought a lot of changes, and some of them aren’t likely to go away. Virtual meetings are likely to stick around. Make sure your shop can do them well. Your customers and potential customers will thank you.