WebExing may not be an official word, but – like Xeroxing to the 90s – it’s currently in vogue for company meetings – replacing the conference call as the next best thing to a physical face-to-face engagement.
But, if you went to a meeting, you would mind your Ps & Qs and, hopefully, know how to behave - so why do some people forget basic etiquette when they join a WebEx?
Here are my top eight tips for making a better virtual impression (in alphabetical order, as everyone has different priorities in life – and, frankly, there are less than ten to remember):
1. Be familiar with sharing options – whether it is an app, screen or presentation, be able to handle things effectively and smoothly, as others will see or pick up on your ineptitude.
2. Don’t read what is on the slide – attendees will switch off quicker than a fused electrical appliance if you just do what they can do for themselves, so have speaking notes prepared for each point and say those.
3. Focus on the matter at hand – if you are wondering whether you shut your front door that morning, left the iron on, or are using the meeting to catch up on email, WebEx can show your lack of attention.
4. Look professional – even if this is only from the table top upwards (no one needs to know that you wear sloppy jogging pants below that nice top, or even a jacket & tie – but do remember what you are wearing, in case you need to stand up).
5. Mute your microphone – unless you are speaking, of course. Heavy breathing, the dog barking, or your partner singing, can all put a meeting off kilter.
6. Start and finish on time – people appreciate the respect this shows for their schedules, and it keeps the meeting professional and on track.
7. Think before you share your video – busy environments can be too distracting for others, as can a pile of washing on the chair behind you.
8. Use the chat facility – rather than interrupt, you can type in questions which can be answered by others, without disturbing the flow.
And, as a bonus, remember, no one will thank you for hosting a boring meeting (whether by WebEx or other means). So be fresh, interesting, and keep the pace lively – your attendees will respond better.
Blog Author: Julian Walker, Head of External Market Communications and PR