Lastest news

The dos and don'ts of video conference calling

Apr 27, 2018
It’s all very well knowing how to behave appropriately in face-to-face situations, but how can etiquette be used to improve performance when you’re not in the same location as the person you’re speaking to? Orla Brosnan of the Etiquette School of Ireland looks at the dos and don'ts of video conference calling. 

Skype has long been regarded as a valuable business tool. It not only enables people to conduct business from a distance, it also helps bridge the gap between your typical business conference call and a face-to-face meeting. Skype meetings can create the closeness that conference calling lacks. Here are some tips when Skyping with clients.

Choose a good location

When you’re going to be doing a Skype call, choose the location for the call wisely. Look for a secure, quiet spot that has good lighting and a neutral background. It’s important to eliminate all distractions, particularly your mobile phone. If you can’t control the location and have to take the meeting when you’re in a noisy area, explain this at the start of the call so the other person appreciates the situation. It’s a good idea to use a headset in situations such as this, so that there is less interference and you can keep the call private.

Be pleasant

The best way to start a Skype conversation is to send a quick message (via Skype) asking if the person is free and available. As you’re not meeting in person, start the call with a smile, give a nod and lean in slightly. This will give the impression that you are professional and pleasant. 

Maintain eye contact

Whether you’re sitting in front of the person or not, eye contact is extremely important, so make sure to look into the camera at all times. It’s tempting to look down at yourself on the screen, but this should be avoided.

Dress professionally

The Skype meeting is a professional situation, so even if you’re doing the call from home, it’s important to dress appropriately in business attire. Present yourself well by maintaining good posture, and don’t fidget or appear distracted. Remember to keep noise distractions to a minimum; tapping or background noises can come across much louder to the other person.

Remember: it’s being recorded!

Keep in mind that all Skype for business calls are recorded. This means that you can play them back in case you need to check anything afterwards – but so can they!

Check your details

When you connect with others on Skype, it means that they can see certain profile information about you. Check what your Skype status, location and any other profile details say, and ensure that they are both accurate and appropriate.

Approach as a normal meeting

Even though you aren’t in a face-to-face meeting, it’s important to behave as if you were. Conduct yourself with poise and professionalism throughout the Skype call.

By taking these simple steps, you will be well equipped to forge successful business relationships, regardless of distance.

Orla Brosnan is the CEO of Etiquette School of Ireland.