Successful Virtual Meetings: Professionalism While Working from Home
COVID-19 has upended our world at large it seems, and the working world is acutely aware of this, as many employees have been appointed to working from home for the foreseeable future. While telework has many benefits (no commute, access to your home’s amenities during the day, and comfort), there are also aspects of your workday that can be complicated when working remotely. Meetings are the primary issue to overcome, but thanks to the many virtual options available today, many employees are overcoming that barrier easily.
As a team of dedicated attorneys here in the Tampa Bay area, we are continuing to serve our clients in whatever ways we can, including meetings by phone or virtual platform. Because of this, we have picked up a few pointers to make your own online meetings more successful until you can be “face to face” in the workplace again.
With such a wide variety of virtual meeting platforms available now, it’s almost absolute that at least a few will be “bad apples” and have issues like information and data leaks, lack of end-to-end encryption, and so forth. Be sure to thoroughly research your chosen platform. If your employer requires you to use a specific platform, be mindful of the level of security and respond in kind, so you can best protect yourself and your information.
How you present yourself matters when you walk into the office each day, and that doesn’t change when you are working from home and heading into a virtual meeting. Take the time to get dressed and make yourself look professional. Showing up to a meeting in your pajamas and generally appearing unkempt is never a good idea. It’s also important to be aware of your surroundings and do your best to display a generic background. Having your spouse cooking dinner behind you, or meeting on your patio where a neighbor is easily seen taking care of yard maintenance in the screenshot with you is not the most professional way to engage in a meeting and won’t gain any points with your boss.
Try to keep your meeting free of as many distractions as possible. We understand that life is happening around you, and the occasional interruption of a child crying or a dog barking is going to be the norm now…but constant noise and disruption not only makes it difficult for you to focus, but is a distraction to others on the call as well. If you don’t have a home office to retreat to, try to find a quiet space like a bedroom, dining area, or any other place that allows you to keep others out and the noise level to a minimum.
Sessums Law Group is thankful for the benefits of technology during this time, as it’s allowing us to continue to move forward with preparing cases and working through mediation with our clients. Even during the current crisis, we are here, and WE STAND FOR YOU!