5 tips to make video meetings as good as real life meetings

During the pandemic, video meetings were an emergency measure. But there’s no need to compromise: video meetings can be just as effective as in person ones. Here are some tips to make your remote meetings the best they can be.

September 16, 2021

1. Look the part

Turning up to video meetings looking like you just rolled out of bed, or joining with a camera that’s only showing half of your face shows that video meetings aren’t ‘business as usual’. If you wouldn’t do something in a meeting room at work, it’s probably not appropriate in a video meeting. Make sure you:

  • Dress for work each day, at least from the waist up, so you look just as polished as you would in the office
  • Find somewhere quiet and distraction-free to work if possible
  • Invest in quality equipment such as a webcam, headset or even a light so you look your best on screen.

Looking the part signals that you treat video meetings just like in-person meetings and it gives your colleagues and bosses confidence that you can perform well while working remotely.

2. Cut down on distractions

It’s easy to stay focused in an office meeting room. But in a video meeting you might have to deal with background noise, interruptions, or colleagues getting a glimpse into your cluttered spare room.

The right video meetings platform will give you tools to cut down on these distractions. Background noise cancellation, adding a virtual background and using your mute button to avoid interruptions all help to create a distraction-free meeting.

3. Listen to everyone

In a video meeting, it’s easier for quieter colleagues to fall into the background than when you meet in person. Active speaker algorithms which prioritise the video and audio of someone who’s speaking can mean that some people sit through meetings almost unnoticed, particularly in a larger group.

If you find that you’re hearing a lot from the same few people, build in meeting time where you specifically call on quieter colleagues to find out if they have ideas, suggestions or questions. If not, just move on.

4. Be prepared

If you’re working with colleagues or managers who aren’t fully on board with remote working, it’s crucial that you prepare thoroughly for video meetings, to ensure that things run as smoothly as possible, and nobody feels their time has been wasted. Focus particularly on:

  • Arriving in the meeting on time so you can begin promptly and other participants aren’t waiting for you
  • Putting together a clear and detailed agenda so you can work efficiently
  • Get any extra resources you’ll need ready in advance: open the documents or programs you’ll be screen sharing from, send relevant links in advance, etc.

5. Have a backup plan

Sometimes video meetings go wrong, so you need a backup plan. This might include failover services if there’s an issue with your meeting platform, or other options for joining, such as telephone dial-in so you and your colleagues can still contribute if there’s WIFI disaster or network issue.

Ready for hassle-free video meetings that bring the human connection at work, no matter where you are?

Try StarLeaf now