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March 19, 2020 2 min read
6 Tips For Better Video Calls At Home
As many of us have discovered, working from home is a new reality. Google just posted a great article on how to make your video calls for work as productive and successful as they can be!
Check out their tips here…
Tip 1: Choose the right environment
When you’re on a call, give some thought to what’s around you, such as the backdrop. Choose a plain wall, and avoid windows that will provide too much backlight. And if you’re using a laptop, put it somewhere steady. I once did an entire video call with my laptop on my, well, lap, and at the end the other participant told me that the subtle wobbling of the screen was extremely distracting.
Tip 2: Invite anyone, anytime
Videoconferencing doesn’t always have to be scheduled; if you’re in the middle of a too-long email conversation, you can instantly set up a meeting and invite people within or outside of your organization to join. Hangouts Meet automatically creates international dial-in codes so people can call on the phone from anywhere, and you can invite people via a Google Calendar event, by email, or by phone.
Tip 3: Can’t hear? Turn on captions
If you’re in a loud place and don’t have super-fancy headphones, you can use Meet’s live caption feature to display captions in real time (just like closed captions on TV).
Tip 4: Presenting? Only share what you mean to share
Don’t you love that moment when you’re sharing your screen and then, suddenly, everyone on the call is reading your email? To make sure you only share what you mean to share, present only one window rather than your entire screen.
Tip 5: Want to read the room? Change the screen layout
One of my favourite features in Meet is changing the layout of the video call. If someone’s showing slides, but there’s a lively discussion happening in the office, you can switch your layout to focus on the people in the office, rather than the presentation.
Tip 6: Be real
Everyone has a life outside of work. Depending on the culture of your workplace, it can be OK (even good) to show a little bit of the “real” life around you — like letting your kid wave to the camera or eating your lunch if you’ve been on nonstop calls all day. Showing a little bit of your life can foster deeper connections with coworkers and even create empathy for whatever you’re dealing with outside of work.
Thanks Google! :)