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

Top 6 Networking Tips

1.  Perfect your elevator pitch! ~ You have 60 seconds to make a lasting impression and one that leaves them wanting to know more. Having your elevator pitch ready to go, makes all the difference in the world.  Remember, this is information that you would share with a perfect stranger, when you first meet them.  Keep it short, concise and pique their interest to want to know more and ask questions.
2.  Join a referral group ~ Exclusive referral networking groups give you the opportunity to make true connection with build deep relationships. It’s like having a best friend in business and hiring a team or outside sales force to represent you in the community.  These are the people we call on when we need help or a connection.
3.  Be intentional with open networking events ~ When going to an open networking event, don’t just throw around as many business cards as you can and hope to get business. Target 5 quality contacts and connections to start a conversation.  Then take it to the next step by following up and getting together at another time.
4.  Build Relationships ~ People do business with who they know, like, and trust. This is a proven fact.  We all refer to a great restaurant or the amazing hair stylist.  Building those relationships by getting to know each other is crucial in trusting to refer business, you want to be sure your referral is well taken care of.  Take the time to get to know each and find out what a good referral would be for each other, otherwise you could be sending each other the wrong clients.
5.  Appearance does matter ~ We’ve all heard the saying, “Dress for the position you want, not the one you have.” There are 11 common assumptions most people make within the first 30-seconds of meeting someone and 93% of first impressions are made in the first 4 minutes; 7% from verbal interactions, 38% from your tone of voice and 55% from your appearance.   Making a good first impression is so important, if you want to be taken seriously.
6.  Listen ~ You’ve heard the saying, “You have two ears and one mouth.” Use them proportionately.  Don’t hijack the conversation.  The conversation should not be all about you and what you want.  It should almost be a mini interview.  Show true genuine interest in OTHERS and find out how you can help them in business.  They will certainly return the favor!


Let’s Connect!
Cristine DiCaprio
Women in Networking Connect, Inc.