We do so many online meetings and talks now. Here are 3 little tips to help you do well in front of your phone or computer.
Keep a forward light directed on to your face. No back light. Natural light is great, make sure it’s from in front not from behind you. You can use a simple study table light shining at your face.
Keep your phone or computer camera at the same level as your eyes. Our tendency is to look down at the computer. Double chins and nostril hair! Elevate the computer on a platform or a stack of books or lower your seat. Put the phone on a tripod or prop it up on a stand. It’s easy. Changing the angle makes you look 100 times better. Also, please don’t move the camera. The people on the other side watching you camera shakes might get dizzy with all the movements you make.
Look at the camera. Looking at your own image as you talk make you look to your listeners like you’re staring at something else. Get used to focusing on the camera. It also helps you to focus your thoughts as looking at your own image on the screen distracts you.
In an online meeting or presentation, mute your microphone unless you need to talk. When listening to a presentation, you may also switch your video off so your image doesn’t distract the presentation and reduces the load on the wifi/servers. If you switch off your video in a presentation, you can do other stuff while you listen. In a meeting I would encourage you to have the video on so your presence and contribution in a meeting will be acknowledged.
Choose words carefully. Do not ramble on. It’s not exactly a normal face to face.
If you’re doing a presentation, you need to continue with creating emotion and intonation with your voice, but remember that your listeners are listening to you in their office, lounge or transport vehicles, avoid yelling and screaming. Speak like you’re speaking to a small intimate gathering.
If you’re a host of a meeting set the rules clearly about speaking in turns and allowing everyone a chance to speak.
Watch your background. Choose a virtual background if you needed to protect your room privacy.
Keep the environmental noise to minimum. Use headphones or ear pods to improve sound quality and stop you yelling at a computer. This also reduces the noise feedback that sometimes happen as the computer microphone captures its own speakers.
This is the simple set up on my desk. A cheap study light, an iPhone tripod and an elevated platform for the laptop.
Any other tips you’d like to add?