Have you ever spent time away from your loved ones and the only way you can see them is by closing your eyes and picturing what they must be doing? Well, I’ve got bad news: those images are often super inaccurate. Like, you picture them looking out the window longingly, awaiting your arrival home, when really they’re probably just sleeping or watching TV or doing something you don’t want to see, like using the bathroom.
Luckily, for businesses that have employees far and wide, there are better tools than the imagination for keeping track of everyone. That’s right: we’re talking about video conferencing! Using two cameras and two screens, you can touch base with your employees face-to-face and make sure they’re getting their work done even if they’re halfway around the world! (IMPORTANT: video conferencing shouldn’t be used for all-the-way around the world employees, because that means they’re right there where you are, and that would just be a waste).
But be warned: video conferencing can be confusing. Seeing people who aren’t actually in the room with you is a lot to unpack, psychologically speaking, and so, as the overseer of the thing, you need to make sure all the conditions are right. Well, guess what? This just so happens the topic of today’s Sean Adams University of Business Management Development Leadership lesson! Crazy, right???
Anyway, here are some helpful tips for making the most of your video conference:
Place yourself: always make sure to video conference in a room where there’s a window, and make sure the view from that window is recognizable. For example, if you’re in Seattle, try to find a conference room where you can see the Space Needle. If you’re in Paris, get the Eiffel Tower in there somehow. If you’re in Nebraska, make sure everyone can get a clear unobstructed view of all the nothing outside. This will help your remote employees cope with the reality that you are in a distinct and different place.
Don’t get overprotective:
If you see someone or something creeping up on the employees you’re video conferencing with, don’t yell, “Look out behind you!” Because if you’re always shouting that, how are they ever going to learn to turn around on their own?
Install a scratch guard on your monitor:
With distance removing the threat of physical retaliation, some employees will get cocky and start picking fights with their far away conference mates. So, putting some sort of guard on your monitors should keep the damages to a minimum when, inevitably, someone starts scratching at the screen in a blind rage.
Always say “Good Bye” at the end:
If you just hang up without saying, “Good bye,” your employees will have no way of knowing whether you just ended the conference or if the world was struck by a giant asteroid whose effects they haven’t yet reached their location. That kind of lingering uncertainty can really mess with productivity levels.
Now, please: let us know if you’ve got any suggestions for effective video conferencing strategies in the comments section!