Virtual Meeting Etiquette: What You Need to Know
These days, virtual meetings are the primary way to communicate and stay in touch, in personal and professional environments. As remote work has allowed many businesses to continue to operate, virtual meetings have become essential.
If online meetings were not part of your day-to-day before the Covid-19 pandemic, it might have taken a little time to get used to them, but by now, you have probably embraced them. For virtual meetings to be as productive as expected, there is a particular protocol or etiquette that you should follow. Here are some tips:
Choose a Good Meeting Spot
Before you join a virtual meeting, be aware of your surroundings, and pick a spot that allows you and others on the call to focus. Is the background too distracting for others to see? Is there a lot of noise around that can distract you from the meeting? If you have a home office in a separate room, you have nothing to worry about, but if not, take a few minutes before the call to find a suitable spot.
Dress the Part
When you work from home, spending all day in your PJs sounds like a tempting idea, but it’s not exactly the best attire for a meeting. There is no need for any fancy outfits. Just make sure you’re presentable. A clean shirt and a fresh face will suffice.
Use Your Webcam
There is a variety of video conferencing tools out there that will make your life easier. Ideally, virtual meetings should video conference meetings, especially when you are catching up with your team. It helps teammates feel connected and improves engagement during the session.
Would you walk into a meeting and sit at the table without saying a word? Probably not. Doing that in virtual meetings would be very awkward too. As soon as you dial in, take a second to let everyone you’re there. If you join a little late, just try not to interrupt anyone.
Go on Mute When You’re Not Speaking
It should probably be at the top of the list of priorities for virtual meetings. Leaving your mic open will cause echo on the call, and there is nothing more frustrating than that. Plus, many other background sounds can interrupt the call and distract everyone on it. Mute your mic before joining the meeting to avoid that.
It’s not uncommon to have to multitask while on a conference call. However, it is best to leave other activities for another team and focus while on the call. You don’t want to get caught off-guard when someone asks you a question. When your webcam is on, remain seated and be mindful of your body language.
Casual meetings can be more relaxed, but for formal meetings, it is best to follow these tips as carefully as possible. It will help you look more professional and well-prepared.