Showing up prepared to virtual meetings/events is even more important given the increased opportunity for distractions (for both the speaker/facilitator and audience members.) Being ready and looking prepared will only increase your credibility in these virtual interactions. Here are just few tips to help you!
- Set your intention of how you desire to show up. Do you want to show up supportive? Powerful? Influential? Participatory? Agreeable? Even if just minutes before you log in, ask yourself, “What is one adjective that I want to represent during this situation?”
- Review your platform profile. Have a photo that represents the presence you intentionally desire. Make sure your name is showing up how you intend. Too often, this is a quick ‘small’ thing that is overlooked but absolutely reflects how you show up virtually and can reflect how prepared you appear. This includes uploading a photo to your profile to as you log in, or heaven forbid there is a glitch in your connection, others can still see your face.
- Check Your Appearance. I won’t pretend to know exactly the expectations of appearances for the masses in all virtual situations. However, I do encourage you to refer back to your intention adjective. Does your appearance align with that intention? Powerful. Prepared. Influential. Your appearance should match your intention from #1, above.
- Remove Distractions. Remove distractions for both you and your audience members. What is hanging out around your head, might you have a lamp sticking up behind you? Might you have a busy sweatshirt on that is distracting to the eye? Might you have headphones clanging against a necklace? Do you have a crowded background that will give your audience members a reason to divert their attention away from you while you speak? Remove any possible distractions, on or around you, to ensure that you and your colleagues are equally focused.
- Frame yourself. Many are finding that presenting virtually is not as simple as we think, at first. Maintaining eye contact requires a focused look at your camera, not at faces on the screen, which is quite different than face-to-face situations. Whatever the camera hits first will present bigger. You want your face to be the star of the show. In order to have this happen you must intentionally position yourself with a slight incline towards the camera. Practice framing yourself before you are live.
Of course you can search for tips on virtual meetings all day long. This article is intended for a quick review of a few tips that will help you to show up prepared, powerful and focused during virtual meetings!
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