Despite the fears and uncertainties that flood our news and social media feeds these days, we are still living in a world full of people who need food, clothing and cleaning supplies. The coronavirus has severely impacted our economy, our social lives, and how we conduct business from day to day, but we as a society are doing our best to hang on and for many of us, that means working from home. Unfortunately, your home is not your true workspace. Things start to get a little crazy with family, pets and the ease of forgetting where you are, especially during conference calls. There is still a necessity to have work meetings whether online or not, so here are three things to consider when attending a virtual meeting.
Mute is your friend
Unless you’re the lead on a conference call and need to be the one talking most of the time, you should mute your part of the feed. If your dog suddenly barks at the mail carrier or your toddler asks for you to help them on the potty, no one will be the wiser. Just don’t forget to un-mute yourself once you need to actually chime in.
Be aware of your surroundings
Working from home also means you aren’t working from the Four Seasons however, during online meetings you must remember that your environment is shared with everyone else. Turn off your TV or radio and other distracting sounds. Make sure that any pictures on the wall behind you will not get any HR complaints, and for the love of all that is holy, don’t take your computer/tablet/phone into the bathroom with you. There are just too many things that could go wrong.
Don’t forget, it’s work
Some people have been working from home (WFH) for a while, but for many of us, it’s a new experience that also takes some getting used to. Don’t forget, a meeting is still a work meeting and your demeanor, presence, and attire should be in work mode for the most part as well. You may want to forego that martini before or during the meeting, and you may want to skip staying in your Christmas pajamas looking like you just rolled out of bed. You still need to conduct business at the end of the day and maintaining a professional work environment should always be a priority.
Not everyone can work from home, but for those of us who can, make sure you consider these tips when conducting a virtual meeting so that you remain professional even in the most uncertain of circumstances.
Photo by Ashley @ Artisanal Agency