What You Should Always and Never Do in Remote Meetings: Part 1

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1.     Feature Article

What You Should Always and Never Do in Remote Meetings: Part 1
By John DiJulius, Chief Revolution Officer

By now we have all seen someone on a Zoom call accidentally showing they are not wearing pants or someone saying something embarrassing thinking they were on mute. Literally overnight, just about every company was thrust into the virtual communication business. As a result, in many cases, the learning curve has been slow and painful. Video meetings with customers and team members are here to stay. It is critical that you train all your employees how to execute video meetings flawlessly.

Never & Always for Video Meetings

Always put the video camera at eye level

Regardless of the device you are using, your phone, tablet, computer, or laptop, you need to make sure the camera is eye level. No one wants to look at your nose hairs.

Never have an unlit face

Make sure you can see yourself on video. I am shocked by how many people have an unlit face. This happens when all the light is behind them, maybe from the window, which casts a shadow over their face. You want your brightest light source to be placed in front of you.

Always mute yourself when not talking

Nothing is more distracting than hearing someone typing, papers ruffling, a cellphone ringing, or  side conversations happening at home. It also is disrespectful to the person who is speaking.

Never look away from the camera

If you have multiple monitors, I recommend turning them off during your meetings. I have seen people taking notes the entire time on another monitor. It looks like they are not paying any attention and multitasking, working on something else. If you want to take notes on your computer, take them on the monitor your camera is on, so you are always facing the camera.

IStock 1144287296, The DiJulius GroupNever have any other apps open

Use your DND (Do Not Disturb) feature and make sure all other applications, especially the ones that have notifications (e.g., messages, email, slack) ARE SHUT DOWN. This will keep you solely focused on the meeting.

Always turn video off temporarily if you can’t give the speaker your full attention

If you are on a long meeting with a group of people and for a brief moment you can’t give 100% attention, it is better to turn your video off and mute. It is distracting to the person speaking and everyone else if they see an empty chair (maybe you ran to the bathroom), you multitasking, or having a conversation with someone.

Always use chat

If you are stepping away momentarily, it is polite to post that you will be right back in chat.

Always encourage other attendees to turn their video on

I have found in both one on one video meetings and in groups, the vast majority will turn their video on if the organizer is on video. Obviously, it is each person’s choice. However, I have found that a simple nudge, “Denise, will you be getting on video?” usually does the trick. While it may not be some people’s preference, in the virtual world we are in today, it is critically important for building a connection to be able to see each other. Also being on camera ensures that everyone on the call does not multitask and remains present during the entire conversation.

Never have distractions in the background

No matter where you are taking your virtual calls from, examine your background for any distractions that can be seen on camera. Keep your background as clean and clutter free as possible. People notice everything. Having a bookcase behind you is fine as long as there isn’t a ton of clutter that can become the unintended focus of other attendees.

Always view all attendees

When it is smaller meetings (i.e., 12 or less) use the view all attendees thumbnail feature, especially if you are the organizer. This allows you to see everyone’s level of engagement and make adjustments to the meeting when necessary.

Never remain on a slide longer than you have to

As a presenter, a great habit to get into is regularly un-share your screen and return the call to a full video conference. While this is a little higher maintenance for the presenter, it is a significantly better experience for all the attendees. If you have made your point on the current slide and are going into detail or having a group discussion, people do not need to stare at the same slide for 3-10 minutes. A change of scenery, going from slides to all attendee view, helps stimulate people’s attention.


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3.     Episode #7 of The Customer Service Revolution Podcast

Episode #7 – John DiJulius talks with Mike and Tina Hodges, founders of Advance Financial (AF). Due to Mike and Tina’s fanatical obsession with Ep7, The DiJulius Groupdelivering a world-class customer and employee experience, Advance is one of the fastest growing financial service companies with more than 100 locations in 13 states. What is shocking about Advance Financial is that they started off actually being bad at both customer and employee experience. Listen to how they made the transformation.

Here are just a few takeaways:

  • How Advance went from delivering poor customer service to excellent.
  • What does a Customer Experience Leader and team do?
  • What is the impact of focusing on the employee and customer experience?
  • How do you keep the momentum and focus on the experience long term?


4.     Quote Of The Week


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5.    Resource to Help Take Your Customer Experience to the Next Level

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At The DiJulius Group, we know that you want to keep your team focused on customer experience. But travel restrictions and budgets make it difficult to get everyone in the same room, which feels so limiting. We believe just because you’re not physically together, doesn’t mean you can’t learn, train and be inspired together. We understand that the tools needed to present and engage in a virtual setting require a special skillset, and most companies don’t have resources to devote to that.

Our virtual studio and team of professionals trained to deliver memorable virtual experiences, means you save time and money. Here’s how it works: contact us to reserve your day, speak with one of our consultants to customize your program, and watch your team engage and create with our guidance. Now you can feel together even when you’re apart!

Schedule a call with Claudia today to find out how we’re helping companies across the country build their experience while working remote.

About The Author

John DiJulius

John R. DiJulius is a best-selling author, consultant, keynote speaker and President of The DiJulius Group, the leading Customer experience consulting firm in the nation. He blogs on Customer experience trends and best practices.