Sarah Cartwright has worked with Management Futures for almost 10 years. She works with both private and corporate clients as a coach, trainer, personal impact coach and image consultant. Here are her 5 top tips for making sure you are camera ready before your next video call:
Tip 1: Get The Right Lights
Overhead lighting is the worst kind of lighting for video calls because it creates shadows under your eyes. Unfortunately, that’s what most people have by default. If you can, aim for natural lighting that is ideally hitting your face at a 45 degree angle. Quick tip - If you go to video settings in zoom (find the small arrow to the right of the video icon at the bottom left of the screen, click it and you’ll see various options), you can click the ‘touch up my appearance’ option. It softens and flatters the lighting slightly.
Tip 2: Watch Your Angle
Make sure your computer camera or webcam is capturing you from the ideal perspective. If it’s angled down too much, you’ll put your fellow meeting-goers in the position of towering over you. And if you’re looking down into your camera, you’ll have more chins than you wish for! You want the lens to be right at eye level. My own current solution is to balance my laptop on 5 chunky cookbooks!
Tip 3. Look Presentable
Put some flattering, solid colours near your face, just like television news presenters do. We all have a particular colour palette that suits us best and makes our eyes stand out and therefore more interesting to watch. Find out what yours is and dress accordingly as it really does make a huge difference. Remember to check your teeth for remnants of lunch!
4. Look Behind You
The people you’re interacting with will be treated to the view of whatever is behind you through the whole meeting. Think about the personal brand you want to communicate and make sure that is reflected in your background. Ideally, the less clutter the better. It looks great when the colour you are wearing is in contrast to your background.
It’s not unusual for people to present a more serious version of themselves on screen. Now, more than ever, people are looking for connection and personal warmth so remember to smile and use open body language.
Virtual Support For The MF Network:
At Management Futures we are determined to do all we can to support people during this COVID-19 crisis so have announced a comprehensive range of enhanced virtual services:
- Virtual Speed or Spot coaching – shortened sessions with experienced executive coaches that deliver practical insight, support and approaches for immediate application (Find out more)
- Learning Labs for coaches – real-world practical shared learning for coaches delivered via interactive online webcasts with industry-leading experts (Find out more)
- Virtual workshops – covering topics leaders and managers can benefit from right now during the crisis with learnings to apply immediately (Find out more)
- Virtual Team Effectiveness Sessions - providing immediate, time efficient virtual support to teams to help them remain effective and enhance performance (Find out more)