In the Thick of It

Young Caucasian man with headphones using his laptop at the kitchen table.

To be most effective, our next two tips cover what to do during and after your remote sessions. These new skills will bolster your resilience and encourage you to reach out and engage with clients and customers.

First and foremost, identify your Intention, or why you’re asking for a meeting. Simply checking in with clients is insufficient. Then email or text them an agenda, asking them to please edit and add anything they would like to cover.

Check time zones. No matter where the participants are located, when you schedule a Zoom session as the Host, it will be sent as your time. It’s easy to make mistakes, so double check!

As the Host, if there are multiple locations for a call, test out muting and unmuting participants, as well as the important Chat function before the session.

With multiple participants, check the box that allows you to see everyone’s name under their image when you are the Host. Then refer to them by name during the session. Everyone likes to be called by name.

Close all other services, including email, text or web browsers. At the very least, turn off notification “dings.” This will avoid multi-tasking.

Raise the laptop or monitor screen so that the camera is eye level. Don’t look down, especially when the camera lens is in the lower left or right portion of your screen.

As the Host, join the meeting five minutes early, so that you are online before attendees.

If your meeting is with only one or two other attendees, and someone does not join within ten minutes, send an email or text that you are “standing by.” This is a great reason to have their phone number handy.

Wear professional, simple clothing, at least from the waist up. Your default color is blue.

Stand during the session to keep your energy up.

Do not eat during the session. (A mug of coffee or tea is fine.) And keep room temp water and grapes nearby to soothe your voice.

Use a paper pad for taking notes-- which is easier than managing multiple digital devices

Realize that remote sessions are more difficult than in-person meetings to keep participants engaged. Speak in short sentences, ask more questions, encourage the use of the chat function, and take surveys—asking for yes or no answers.

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