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These days, the number of companies adopting video conferencing into their communication platforms is growing. More and more people are also getting better at using the technology. But not everything is smooth sailing. It’s not uncommon for first-timers to hit a couple of snags as they try to find their way around. Read on to know what these boo-boos are. If you’re making any of these mistakes, you better stop now:

#1: Not Planning Ahead

It’s basic to plan for any meeting, but it’s even more important with a video conference, one you’re doing with none other than your boss. You’ll need to pick out a good spot. Are there too many distractions around?

Does the space or area look professional? Keep the background noise to a minimum, says the Mobile Village. Make a thorough sweep of the area and get rid of anything out of place. Look for any errant piece of trash, personal belongings, or items that could derail the meeting or make you seem less than what you should be: a consummate professional.

#2: Not Paying Attention to the Lighting

Make sure the lighting is right. Check if it’s too dark or too bright. One of the best things about video calls is that you get to share content with the person on the other end of the camera. However, if you don’t check the lighting in the room before switching on the camera and proceeding to your meeting right away, you could end up with compromised visuals. That’s not going to make for an ideal sharing environment. Don’t wait until your boss asks you to adjust your settings. Remember that your boss’s time is precious, so don’t waste their time. Get this done before that meeting.

#3: Being Late

picture of a huge metropolitan city

One of the best benefits of video calls is that they save time. After all, you no longer have to travel just to get to and from a meeting. You save on effort as well as on fare or fuel, too. But if you go log in late, you throw those benefits out of the window. You also hold up the meeting for everyone else. And if it’s not just any meeting, but one with your immediate superior, you risk giving a wrong impression, or worse, developing a reputation for being unreliable.

That’s a thought you definitely wouldn’t want the person who’s signing your paychecks to entertain about you. It’s not just about being late. It’s about hurting your chances at a future promotion. If your boss thinks you can’t even make it on time for a meeting, they might decide that your unreliability could cross over to other aspects of your work.

#4: Winging the Technology

You want to appear confident and relaxed during that meet. That’s hardly going to happen, though, if you don’t know how to use the technology right. Think the system you’re using is too complex? Time to switch to another system. Companies like the BlueJeans offer a business video conferencing solution for IT that’s easy to install, learn, and use.

That way, you have no excuse not to learn the technology. Master it. Know it inside and out. A good video communication system is an excellent tool. Make the most out of it by ensuring you know and understand how to work every feature. This gives you easy control over the meeting so that you can stay calm and confident all throughout.

#5: Not Troubleshooting In Advance

Don’t make the mistake of being late simply because you had to do an update and didn’t know about it. Don’t be late because you had to troubleshoot, either. Make sure you give the software a try an hour or two before the meet. That way, you could easily resolve anything and still have plenty of time to prepare for your meeting.

#6: Eating During a Meeting

Man eating cake on the kitchen table.

The Wall Street Journal asks: will you really bring that sandwich into the boardroom? No? Then it’s pretty safe to say that you shouldn’t bring it into your meeting with the boss as well. The sound of you chewing is distracting. Plus, it looks really inappropriate. If you want to keep everything on a professional keel, keep your sandwich out of your meetings.

#7: Not Making the Most of It

You already have video call technology, so why are you still using email or chat? While both offer an advantage, make sure you’re not falling back on these communication tools out of habit. Ask yourself every time you use chat if a video call would work better. If the answer is yes, then try to invest the time and effort into learning where you can use video daily.

Make sure you aren’t making any of these mistakes the next time you have to prepare for a meeting with anyone up on the chain of command. By getting that video meet right, tap dancing for the boss should be easy.

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