Technology has paved the way for people to connect despite the distance. Online messaging and video conferences have made virtual meetings possible. In particular, businesses take advantage of this modern era through the use of video conferencing as a means to conduct meetings, seminars, trainings, and online courses—all without having to meet in person.
Unlike face-to-face communication, video calls enable you to talk to your boss or client anywhere, anytime. But that doesn’t mean you don’t have to look as good as you would if you were meeting in person.
Keep your professional image in its prime by looking your best during video conference calls. Here are some tips that should help you create a visual impact they will never ignore.
Good Lighting Matters
Just like professional photo shoots, lights and angles matter during video calls. When you talk to your supervisor or a new investor, the last thing you’d want is to have a bothersome shadow cast all over your face.
Video calling under fluorescent light is a major turn-off. This type of light, especially when it is overhead, casts unflattering shadows and darken the skin under the eyes. The general rule is to place your main light source behind the camera, making sure that both light and camera face the same direction. To get the best lighting, place two light sources behind the camera—one on the right side and the other on the left.
The angling of the camera also matters. Make sure to place it at your eye level. This will ensure that your body is equally proportioned when captured on camera.
Mind the Background
During video calls, the focus is not just on you. The other end of the call could easily place their attention on other things in the background as well. And when you’re trying to ace an interview or close a deal, this should be the last thing you want to happen.
Wherever you’re calling from—may it be at home or in an office—make sure to clean up the clutter in the background. This also goes for the pictures hanging on the walls or other objects that may not be becoming of your company’s brand. If you want to go the extra mile, invest in a backdrop with the color of your choice, and use it every time you make calls.
Look Your Best
You may only be video calling from home, but that doesn’t give you the excuse to look like you just got out of bed. Dress just as you would when you go to work in the office. Neutral colors are a foolproof look, but it wouldn’t hurt to wear bold colors too. To avoid giving out too many distractions, it’s best to steer clear from patterns, plaids, or stripes in your clothing.
For most video conference calls, you should be able to wear any type of bottoms, unless you might need to stand up during the entirety of the call.
Lastly, don’t forget to give one last check on your overall look before logging on. You don’t want to know there’s something stuck to your teeth only during the call itself!
Get the Best Equipment
If your work involves a lot of video conferencing, consider investing in quality video-calling equipment. A unified conference station, such as the Polycom CX5500 delivers high-definition communications for most video-calling applications. These types of equipment usually comes with a plug-and-play feature, which means you can use your laptop, plug the device, and begin sharing videos in a breeze. Relying on your laptop’s built-in camera each time may not deliver the same quality results and will say a lot about your brand of work.
Depending on your setup, you may need to use a headset during a video conference. While this may do just fine, a video chat without wearing one looks more natural for both you and your caller. To achieve this, get a video conferencing equipment that includes a good mic and a speaker.
Now that you know how to create a good first impression during a video call, all that’s left to do is to do your best. Getting nervous before a call is completely normal, but constant practice should give you leverage over time. Once you are confident with how you look, best believe that the rest is sure to follow.