Working from home is a modern-day luxury.  More companies than ever are finding ways to support their teams working from home, anywhere in the country and even anywhere in the world.  As a result, more people are joining meetings from their remote location often via video conferencing.  While video conferencing offers lots of benefits there are several downsides to be conscious of.

Know how it works!   Before you have a call, make sure you understand the features of your video conferencing system.  Be aware that from company to company they may use different video conferencing tools with different functionalities.  If you receive an invitation to join a VC from someone outside your organization there may be some issues logging in.  Many times, you will be asked to create an account or asked for the mystery PIN that no one ever knows. Give yourself 10 minutes before the call to make sure you are able to get everything set up.

Pick a Location!  If using a conference room make sure you pick one that will allow for a video conference.  Try to stay away from large open spaces as they will often result in strange noises and interruption on the call. Don’t forget to bring a charger for your computer with you and make sure there is an outlet in the room you are using. Also, choose to either dial in on a phone or a computer but be careful not to use both at the same time as it usually results in feedback.

Say Cheese!  Remember that you are on camera.  Twirling your hair, reading on your phone and even just staring at the ceiling are very noticeable to the other participants of the call.  Be conscious of your body language!

This may sound obvious, but it isn’t always easy.  A great way to really assess yourself is to have a video conference recorded and see how you and your peers look to others on these calls.  You may be surprised by what you see.  As fewer people are commuting into the office on a regular basis the more important it becomes to properly represent yourself on camera.

By Caitlin Mandeville | People Science CSM