Networking

TOP-7 Tips and Strategies for a Professional Virtual Meeting

We certainly all are living in a different world and adjusting to the new Norm.  The world has thrown us a big curveball.  Wouldn’t you agree?   So, we adjust! 

Women in Networking Connect has been utilizing Zoom for virtual meetings and trainings for a few years now.  We have seen everything from people cooking dinner, to people laying in bed, to no face at all…just a black screen.   Based on our experience, we have put together our recommended

TOP-7 Tips and Strategies for a professional virtual meeting

Virtual meeting stock photo

1) Appearance First and foremost, treat your virtual meetings as if you were face-to-face.  First impressions are everything.  Whether it is the 1st, 5th or 20th time you are meeting.  Did you know 93% of lasting impressions come within the first four minutes of meeting someone and 11 assumptions are made in the first 30 seconds?   We suggest that you “start with the basics.”  Be sure your hair is fixed, apply your makeup and a solid neutral top is always the best bet.  Then, add your jewelry to complete your look and you’re good to go with a polished and pulled together look and a good virtual impression.

2) Practice – If you are using a program that is new to you, be sure to set up a practice run ahead of time.  Be sure you know how to use the virtual software, turn on your camera and microphone, and use any other features you might need to know beforehand.

3) Lighting – So important!  If you can position yourself so that you are facing a window, we prefer natural lighting.  If you cannot get natural light, use a lamp in front of you or a ring light attached to your laptop or tablet for the prefect lighting, especially on dark days or if you cannot position yourself to face a window. 

4) Security Features – There are a few Virtual meeting programs out there.  We are familiar with ZOOM and will discuss the features that Zoom has added to increase security and meeting privacy.  If you are discussing confidential information, these features are definitely a must!  Zoom offers all meeting users the option to password protect their meetings, so that all attendees must enter the correct password to join.  Another great feature is the “Waiting Room.”  This allows participants to wait in the waiting room and be added to the meeting when the administrator accepts them to the meeting.  As the administrator, you can also now “Lock” your virtual meeting by clicking on the security button at the bottom of the page.  This will not allow any further participants in, once the meeting has started.  This is a great feature to minimize untimely attendees and disruptions.

5) Timeliness – We suggest that you arrive to your virtual meeting a few minutes early (even if you have to wait for your host to start) or at the minimum, be right on time.  Treat virtual meetings, the same as you would an in-person meeting.  As a professional, you would not arrive late for an in-person meeting, you shouldn’t be late for a virtual one either.

6) Location – Try to find a quiet, private area to attend the meeting from.  Ask family members to give you time and space for your meeting.  Try to keep pets locked out or in other spaces so they do not interrupt and let family members know this is a LIVE meeting with audio and video.

7) Prepare – Before you join the virtual meeting, be sure that you have a pen and paper to take notes, all the files and paperwork you may need, a drink, login in information,  etc..  You should be just as prepared for a virtual meeting as you would for an in-person meeting.

~Cristine DiCaprio & Lisa Boucher

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