Take a glance at your surroundings, and it’s hard to dispute that mobile devices are omnipresent. We’re rarely more than an arm’s reach from our phones and tablets, which is why mobile video conferencing is revolutionizing the way we conduct meetings. To make the most of the mobile revolution, apply these seven best practices to ensure your video meetings go off without a hitch.
1. Mount Your Phone
Shaky camera feeds are distracting and make it difficult for employees to participate. There are several products on the market that allow you to mount your phone and avoid this scenario. Speak with your AV integrator for suggestions on various mounts have on hand for employee use and/or to recommend for use by your remote team who may be using phones to conference in.
2. Adjust for Lag Time
While mobile video conferencing is increasing in popularity, it’s not without its share of tech issues. There is inevitably some lag time, particularly when you’re coordinating several parties at once. Take steps to minimize the amount of lag by:
• Closing all other browser tabs and applications to ensure maximum bandwidth
• Connecting to WiFi instead of using mobile internet, if possible
• Making sure your technology is updated to the latest version
3. Use Headphones and a Microphone
Choppy audio quality is distracting and decreases the efficiency of your meeting. Echoes in the audio usually means one person’s speakers are too loud, and headphones provide an instant fix. Headphones or earbuds with a built-in microphone are best, depending on your personal preference, and provide the least amount of visual distraction.
4. Check Your Surroundings [and Yourself!]
Be wary of potential audio and visual distractions that might wreak havoc during meeting times. While mobile collaboration allows us to conference anywhere, coffee shops and parks might be too distracting or unprofessional. Stick to an office background, whether at home or in the workplace. A blank wall makes for the best background—you want people to focus on what you’re saying, not your surroundings. And speaking of distractions, if you’re wearing necklaces or earrings that jangle when you move or are sporting stubble or a half-zip that might rub against a microphone, you might be making your fellow conference participants crazy with little noises. Check not only your surroundings but what you’re wearing with a view toward minimizing distractions and you’ll be good to go.
5. Pay Attention to Lighting and Positioning
Tweaking your lighting is a small adjustment that can make a world of difference. Best practices suggest putting a lamp or other light behind your mobile device so you don’t have too much light behind you. Make sure your camera is positioned at eye level and not pointing toward the ceiling lights, capturing a great shot of your nostrils, or toward the floor (a mount will fix this problem). Good lighting and great device positioning makes the difference between a quality picture and video conferencing experience and a poor one.
6. Minimize Your Distractions
Just as you need to take steps to minimize distractions for others, take steps to keep yourself focused. Clean your office and desk area so you can remain focused on the task at hand. Minimize external noises as much as possible. Find a clean, comfortable place where you can collaborate without background noises or visual distractions.
7. Learn from Yourself
It’s important to learn as you go and make changes when necessary. Once you participate in a video conference or presentation, watch the recording. Pay attention to little habits or gestures you may not be aware of—for example, distracting habits you might have or things you may do while speaking. Take note of your surroundings, your camera angles, and how you look. Take cues from professional speakers and continually tweak your performance so you can deliver your best video conference. Learning from yourself is the best way to fine-tune your communication style.
Mobile video collaboration is becoming commonplace and will soon be the norm for conferencing. Take these steps, and you’ll improve your communication skills while streamlining company efficiency.