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7 Tips for Remote Teams Using Zoom Videoconferencing

Spending a lot more time looking at your coworkers

You're not alone if, as a result of the coronavirus outbreak, you've found yourself spending a lot more time looking at your coworkers during a Zoom videoconference. It can be scary at first if you're not used to video meetings.

Fortunately, there are some best practices you can follow, including as keeping oneself on silent and keeping your camera on at all times (unless you have a good reason otherwise). Both of these factors contribute to a productive and enjoyable meeting with your remote team.

Here are a few more pointers to help you make the most of your Zoom meetings.

Here are a few more pointers to help you make the most of your Zoom meetings.

1. Make use of a waiting area

If you have a lot of meetings, especially if your calendar is packed, there's always the possibility that someone in your next meeting will log on a few minutes early, or that a meeting will run late. Fortunately, Zoom includes a waiting room option that allows new attendees to be placed there rather than in your meeting room.

Log in to your account, go to Preferences, and scroll down to Meeting (advanced), where you can turn on or off the waiting room.

2. Schedule Meetings on a Regular Basis

If you meet with the same group of individuals on a regular basis, you can set up a recurring meeting in Zoom that uses the same settings and meeting link. This makes scheduling a breeze, and because it doesn't rely on your personal meeting invitation, you can keep distinct groups of participants apart. Log in to Zoom, then go to "Meetings" and "Schedule a Meeting." Then select "recurring meeting" from the drop-down menu.

3. Make use of attention tracking software

One of the most difficult aspects of holding a meeting, especially if you're sharing your screen, is seeing your attendees. Naturally, some of those people are probably preoccupied with something else or aren't giving you their undivided attention. If this is a problem, you can enable "Attention Tracking," which will notify you if one of your attendees has moved another window in front of Zoom. This option is also available under the advanced meeting options.

4. Request access to another computer's desktop

It would be so much easier to assist a coworker in diagnosing an issue or working on a project if you could sit next to them. While Zoom does not totally fix this issue, it does allow you to request desktop control for your participants. You'll have to wait for them to approve the request, but you'll be able to control their cursor with your own mouse and keyboard, which is very useful for demos or technical support.

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5. Be aware of your surroundings

Until we log on to a meeting and can see ourselves, we normally don't pay much attention to what's behind us. It's then that you realize it might have been worthwhile to pay a bit more attention to what others notice. If you don't have a good alternative, Zoom includes a "virtual background" feature that you can use on your laptop.

6. Take notes throughout your meetings

Zoom's free version allows you to record calls to your computer, which is extremely useful for meetings and demos. The commercial edition also includes the ability to save recordings to the cloud, making it simple to share with team members later by just emailing a link.

7. Make a few minor adjustments to your appearance

You can use the "touch up my appearance" setting if you want to have some fun or if you have a meeting before you've had a chance to thoroughly prepare for the day. To add a minor skin-smoothing effect to your Zoom App on your laptop, go to "preferences" and then "video settings."

Bonus Tips!

Use a good pair of ear buds or headphones.

It's critical that your colleagues can hear you well, especially if you're working somewhere with a lot of background noise. It's the same with being able to hear them. Personally, I like the Apple AirPods Pro, but any pair of wired or wireless headphones will suffice.

If you're new to videoconferencing, Zoom also offers a fantastic resource guide geared to assisting teams affected by Covid-19. It comes with free training as well as a list of best practices for keeping your team connected.

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2022 Erik Steven

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