Video calls are becoming commonplace with advancing technology simplifying the process. Every day, you may use video calls for reinforcing personal relationships, performing interviews, or business meetings. Staying on top of trends to keep your business fresh may involve engaging in activities that take you out of your comfort level. Preparing yourself physically and mentally can help to keep you cool when you’re in front of the camera, so you can keep your career moving forward. Here are some tips on how to stay calm for teleconferences.
Dress for Success
Regardless of whether your call is for an interview or a budget meeting, dressing professionally can help you feel confident. This piece on thinkgrowth by Sam Mallikarjunan discusses why, from many different fields and perspectives. Not only does it help you to feel better, but it will lead to your peers taking you more seriously. This circle of confidence in yourself leading to confidence in you by others will provide energy — even through a monitor — that will keep you collected.
Empower Yourself with Knowledge
They say that the first five minutes of a presentation are all you need before you fall into a rhythm for the rest. Reinforcing your knowledge of everything you will cover early will help a presentation go smoothly. However, what if you’re teleconferencing for an interview, or a discussion? Reviewing the subject material of the discussion, or the background information of the business or job where you’re interviewing can provide you with the fundamental knowledge to keep you on your feet, and impress everyone while you’re at it. However, try not to burden yourself too much information, or focus on memorization! If possible, you may also be able to research your colleagues or interviewers on Facebook or LinkedIn and get to know them ahead of time. Knowing how much James from marketing loves his cat could be the thing that eases you in with your peers.
Depend on a Reliable System
Before you begin an online interview or group video conference, make sure you have a reliable connection and call system, such as BlueJeans. When you don’t have to worry about technological hiccups, you can focus on being confident in yourself and the subject at hand. Take time before your call to familiarize with any of the software being used and test your internet connection as well, so you understand how to handle anything that may arise.
Remember Your Strengths
Regardless of whether you’re attending an interview or discussing the office budget, it is important, especially under stress, to remember the strengths that brought you to where you are. Before your video conference, try to rally around those strengths. If it helps, you may also want to write them down and take them along with you to look at and remind you of what you’re capable of. Although it can be difficult for some to remember their strengths, asking friends and family for their thoughts can serve to fill the gaps in your confidence. Let yourself rely on your support network and bring it with you to focus on the meeting, interview, or presentation at hand.
Stay Focused on the Subject
Whether it’s for an interview, presentation, or a business meeting, keeping your focus on the subject at hand can be the steadying force you need to keep cool. Take a notebook with you, and write your topics down. Having that visual in front of you will remind you about what’s important if your thoughts — or the topic of conversation — wanders. You may want to write down several key points that you want to discuss. Build your plan around these points and let them anchor you, letting them be the foundation of your confidence.
During your call, if you aren’t the primary presenter, taking notes will help you keep track of the conversation as well as any ideas or questions that may arise. This will also help you to stay engaged with the content, and let you review it if you lose your train of thought. Writing down questions will keep them fresh, and you can take initiative by asking them when given the opportunity. If you’re using the call for an interview, you may also have some questions composed ahead of time that you can bring with you.
Allow yourself to take a moment to breathe and compose your thoughts. Mindfulness is becoming a useful tool for managing stress in and out of the workplace, and can be valuable for keeping calm in any situation. Giving yourself the time to form the best wording for a question, or the perfect answer, can make the difference between attending a conference or leaving an impression at one. Take time, take a breath, and find your calm.
Featured image: BBC News