A video conference is a great way to connect with employees or clients during the lockdown. You’ll get to see their faces, hear their voices, and connect in a much more intimate way than via an audio conference call. However, there are certain aspects of your video call you’ll want to consider if you’re to host an effective conference.
From the audio and video quality of your call to the right audience and discussion material, we’ll cover some of the most important aspects of an effective call. The next time you host a video conference, you’ll be an expert at making the call short, sweet, and productive. Let’s take a closer look at these tips.
The first and arguable the most important aspect of an effective video conference call is clear video and audio. We’ve all been in a call that suffered from garbled audio and pixelated video feeds, or that kept cutting out continuously. This is simply not conducive to effective calls! Having to reconnect, restart the call, or troubleshoot on-the-fly is nothing less than a distraction.
Choosing the best conferencing service like Vast conference calling is crucial to ensuring you’re getting good quality audio and video. Your connecting speed and reliability are certainly important, but even with a good connection, faulty software or services can fall short. You owe it to your business, your clients, and your employees to utilize the best services you can afford, especially when good communication within a business is a critical component of its success.
Be sure to do any troubleshooting before your video meeting starts. That way, you’re not interrupting anyone while they’re talking. Encourage participants to ensure their equipment is working before they ever join the call.
The best, most effective meetings are short, simple, and to the point (and follow an agenda). The longer your meetings are, the greater the chance that participants will start to tune out, and when that happens, you’ve lost your momentum. In fact, most experts agree that meetings should be kept under one hour—closer to 45 minutes, if possible. After about an hour, distractions can take hold, causing a meeting to fall apart. It’s also important to minimize distractions as much as possible. This is certainly more difficult with video meetings since your callers are likely at home or in the comfort of their office, where distractions (like social media) are easily accessible.
It’s important to keep everyone engaged with pertinent and interesting content. It’s not always possible to make certain subjects more interesting, but it is possible to ensure greater participation by asking questions and encouraging quiet participants to speak up.
Speaking of participants, let’s look closer at the importance of inviting the right people to a call. Have you ever been in a conference call with someone and thought, “Who invited this guy?” I think it’s safe to say we’ve all been there at some point. There’s always someone who talks too much, talks about everything but the meeting’s content, or who is simply a distraction. Sometimes, we invited people to meetings without even considering whether they should actually be there or not.
Take careful measure of who’s attending your meeting. Do they belong there? Do they experience or a stake in what’s being discussed? Does their experience apply directly to the issue you’re trying to solve? If not, you can probably do without inviting them. That way, you minimize distractions and ensure productivity. Sometimes, a simple email synopsis of the meeting is enough.
If you’re the meeting host, you’ll need to know exactly what you’re talking about, what the meeting’s goals are, and how you want to reach them. An easy way to cause callers to disengage is to go into a meeting without a plan, or without the proper knowledge to address the issues at hand.
Know your stuff! If this means performing some extra research, so be it. Your callers want to know that you’re knowledgeable and trustworthy on the subject matter. The same goes for client calls.
Sometimes, you’ll need to take control of the call as the host. Using your host powers becomes a necessity when there’s excessive background noise, distractions, or you have a participant who’s causing problems.
Don’t be afraid of the mute and end call buttons. You can mute yourself, everyone, or individuals. You can also disconnect anyone from the call should they be distracting or disruptive.
You’ll need to make sure the call stays on track, too. Use your agenda (which everyone should have) to guide your callers towards the end goal and keep them focused. The shorter your meetings are, the better.
What makes a video conference effective? You. The host is responsible for the efficacy and effectiveness of the conference call. Be sure you’re using the right platform, planning ahead, and following the rest of the tips we’ve provided. Your conference calls will be much more effective when you take the reins.