Due to the pandemic, we have become used to working from home. Sitting in front of a webcam for long meetings has become the norm.
If you have regular online meetings with clients, senior management or other colleagues, you want to come across as professionally as possible, without having to redecorate your home and buy expensive new accessories.
Read on for my top tips on professional online video calls.
Replace your webcam with your phone camera
Consider your phone a pocket-sized studio.
The best camera you possess is most likely the one on your smartphone. It works as a high-end camera for video meetings and live streaming due to the numerous lenses, sensors and immense computing power of your phone.
Focus on your lighting if you don't do anything else
Natural light on your face from the front is ideal. It provides a clear, professional look by enhancing and brightening your complexion and features. It's fantastic for brightening your eyes and can make you look more engaging on camera.
Understand the importance of angles
One of the fundamental laws of camerawork is to maintain the camera at eye level or above. Avoid low angles as these can be unflattering.
Be aware of your appearance
Preparation is vital. A large part of being effective on camera is acting as you would in person. Treat the experience as a physical face-to-face meeting by being smart and well-groomed.
Select the appropriate backdrop
Our houses are naturally less geared up for business meetings than a corporate boardroom, but there will be some areas that are more appropriate than others for a work call. Home decor can divert attention away from the main subject: you. Choose a plain backdrop if possible, or use the background-blurring function offered by video-calling apps.
TAKEAWAY: These tips make you think about how you present yourself in an online meeting. Remove background distractions, get the lighting right and dress appropriately. You're now ready for prime time and you can just focus on what to say!