A Week of Being on Video

Video conference - A week of being on video

A Week of Being on Video

Video conference - A week of being on video

Just like everyone, last week was an unusual one. Being forced to work from home was one adjustment, but having to meet everyone on a conference call was another. Anyone who knows me knows that I dislike being on camera, so the thought of video conferencing and webinars filled me with dread. I know I can’t be alone in this! I have had some hilarious conversations with my friends over the weekend about how we’ve been caught out a few times with dodgy hairdos, one friend spoke of how she looked like she aged dramatically as each conference took place throughout the day, which I related to massively. There was also some giggles with others who have dressed business-like on the top half and are rocking PJs on the bottom half. That’s not for me either!

Here is what I discovered as the week progressed when my work life turned into a mass of video conferences:

Ensure there is light in the room

At the beginning of last week I was in another part of my house, I was downstairs in the back of my house which doesn’t get light until the afternoon so when I first stepped on the conference calls no one could see me. After Monday’s Lockdown announcement, I decided to move my desk space to the upstairs and to the front of my house, which gets great light all day. I rearranged my room around to make a really nice office space, one where I felt comfortable being on video calls; that was very important to me.

What’s going on in the background?

I had so many ridiculous moments last week whilst on a conference call, as I am sure many others did too. My crazy beagle appeared in several conferences, which threw me off course a few times, and my youngest daughter who is sharing my office walked past me in the background with a pink sewing machine as she was attempting to do her Textiles homework without disturbing me. It was crazy! As the week progressed, just like in any job, I had to plan in advance!

I have two daughters at home presently, so when I had a video conference call booked in we had to ensure that they had a space where they could work for an hour, and somewhere secure for the dog to go to, but he did slip out once again …… argh! Fingers crossed for this week.

Make myself level to the camera

Like every other newbie working from home, I don’t have a proper office chair. I have a proper desk, but my chair is an antique piano stool! Not really very practical going forward. So this means that I am not working at the correct height. I ran an entire webinar last week with people basically looking up at me (not the most flattering angle), and the camera was maybe just a bit too close to my face. However, as the week progressed, I realised if I pushed my laptop back on my desk, there was a better view looking straight on to me rather than up at my chin!

Does anyone care what my hair looks like?

I think the answer to this is a resounding NO! I know I am in danger of sounding a bit vain, but I’m actually not. However, at the beginning of last week, I actually did care and fiddled with my hair throughout many a video conference, which just looks awkward. This week, as long as it is neat and tidy, I really don’t care as I am sure no one else does.

Social Media Coaching

Get dressed properly

This is a must for me! It’s the only way that I can switch into business mode! I’m still rocking the business attire! Not suited and booted I may add, just properly dressed. I know loads of people are sitting there with joggers or PJs on the bottom half, but I’m not. I even worked on Friday in a dress, albeit with my UGG boots on my feet (well we need to keep them toasty). Has anyone else noticed they have really cold feet at home?

It’s not going to be perfect

I can be a bit of a perfectionist at times! So, I have really had to adjust to the idea that not all of these video calls are going to be perfect. If anything, it’s quite a positive step for me, it means I have been forced to go into a zone that I am not comfortable with, so that when we come out of the other side of this. I will not care in the slightest if I am asked to go on video. I am going into week two with a far less harsh view of myself on video.

Stop being self-conscious and just rock the video

Confidence hasn’t always been my best friend, but it is growing more and more each day. After a week of being on video and an entire weekend of chat with my friends and family on video too. I am ready to face video head on this week. For anyone else who finds it difficult being on video, lets head into week two fully embracing the video conference call!

I’d be interested to know anyone else’s experience of video conference calls in the last week.

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