Companies all over the world are using web conferencing to better communicate with coworkers, clients and prospective customers. Even though the technology is relatively easy to use, it can seem intimidating to beginners.
These five tips will help you feel more relaxed and ensure your first online meeting results in a pleasant experience.
1. Test the software
Practice really does make perfect. Many online conferencing programs have free trials, which you can use to become familiar with the software. Learn about the different tools and interactive features the software has to offer. The best way to build comfort and confidence is through practice.
2. Prepare your surroundings
Sometimes it’s hard to find a quiet spot in an office environment. If you can, find an office with a door and close it for the duration of your web meeting. If you are working in a cube, put a sign up saying that you are participating in a web conference. This will help your colleagues be more cognizant of their noise levels.
3. Remember the mute button
Otherwise discrete sounds like shuffling papers, typing notes or munching on snacks can be magnified into your online meetings. To avoid these distracting background noises, put yourself on mute anytime you’re not speaking. Top of the line conferencing software, like iMeet and GlobalMeet, have personal mute buttons providing easy access to volume controls.
4. Arrive on time
It’s important to make sure you don’t dial-in too early or too late. Online meetings do not have a waiting area, so if you dial in too early you may interrupt a previous meeting. Also, joining a meeting 15 minutes late will not go unnoticed. For security reasons, web meetings usually show all participants when someone is logging on. The best time to join is two or three minutes before the start time.
5. Pay attention
Try not to multi-task during a web meeting. If you were in a conference room with your team, you wouldn’t check emails and take calls on your cell phone. Sometimes it can be difficult to stay engaged in virtual meetings because you’re not in the same room as other participants—but, it’s just as important. You can potentially miss important announcements or assignments.
To help fight the temptation, minimize all windows on your computer and change your instant message status to “please do not disturb” or “in a meeting.”
Following these simple tips will help you get through your web meetings with ease. Would you like to learn more about other web conferencing tips and techniques? Check out PGi’s Learning Space.
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