Zoom meetings have been part of our everyday private & professional life since March 2020 at the latest. Even so, we still make zoom errors. That’s why we’re introducing you to the six most popular zoom mistakes and how you can avoid them in the future.
In February 2020, nobody would have believed that we would talk to our friends and work colleagues almost exclusively via Zoom in the coming months and years Because regardless of whether it is professional training, birthdays, or game evenings: Almost everything takes place virtually in video conferences.
This is also reflected in the providers. While Zoom.us had just 106 million views in February 2020, it was more than 2.3 billion Visits in January 2021. That is more than twenty times that.
Six Popular Zoom Mistakes – And Six Tips On How To Avoid Them In The Future
But even though we all spend our time on Zoom Calls daily or regularly, that does not mean that we have mastered the application perfectly. The opposite is more likely the case. This is especially true for professional use in a business environment.
This is the conclusion reached by Briar Goldberg, who, as Director of Speaker Coaching at TED, has been training (body) language with speakers during lectures for years. She has noticed a few mistakes during Zoom meetings over the past few months that even experienced speakers make. So if you recognize yourself, don’t worry. Implement the tips.
You Are Not Making Enough Eye Contact With Your Audience
Every speaker and seminar leader knows how important it is to regularly look your participants in the eyes. This increases the speaker’s credibility and, at the same time, makes it harder for the listener to be distracted.
But how do you manage to look your audience in the eyes at a Zoom Meeting? The solution: You have to look into your camera, not your screen. Goldberg recommends a 90-10 split between the camera and screen. You can use the ten percent of the time you look at the screen to analyze the mood of your audience. You can tell from their facial expressions whether all participants understand everything or whether boredom is prevalent.
You Don’t Practice Your Presentations
Many presenters believe that a zoom presentation does not require a lot of preparation. After all, if in doubt, the participants cannot even visually identify your notes on their desk. However, the audience does notice whether a speaker is reading everything. This also means that he can make eye contact with the community less often.
There isn’t much you need to do to fix this zoom bug. Imagine giving a presentation on a stage in front of 100 people and then preparing for your Zoom meeting with the same perseverance and attitude.
You Overload Your Presentation Slides
The third of the fatal and frequent zoom errors is also known to us from face-to-face events: there is so much information on the slides that we cannot keep up with it. In a virtual context, however, well-designed slides are even more critical. After all, in the vast majority of cases, the presentation will overlap your face. This means that users only see information for minutes or hours.
To avoid straying, you should make your slides as clear and short as possible. During zoom calls, participants have to choose between reading and listening. That’s why you’d better distribute your content over several slides and instead secure your attention. It is also beneficial if you avoid long presentations. Split up your slides and give yourself more “screen time” because that increases your audience’s attention – as already mentioned – significantly.
You Are Using An Exciting Zoom Background
The first three zoom errors have already revealed that the primary aim is not to lose the community’s attention. Therefore any form of distraction is dangerous. Therefore, one of the most significant zoom errors is funny or exciting zoom backgrounds. Bookshelves or private rooms are, of course, fascinating. But also, the palm beach or the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco offer enough opportunities to drift away mentally.
If you want to give a successful Zoom presentation, you should sit in front of a neutral background – for example, a white wall. Avoid using zoom backgrounds because the mere fact that the overlay function sometimes makes body parts disappear creates a lot of restlessness and distraction in the audience. And that’s precisely what we want to avoid.
You Sit In The Dark Or The Light
Do you sometimes have trouble distinguishing your colleagues in the Zoom conference from their backgrounds? Then you are not alone. Proper light is one of the biggest problems in most zoom presentations.
A Helpful And Straightforward Rule: Make sure your primary light source is right behind your camera. The (day) light shines directly in your face and puts you in the right light.
You Allow All Participants To Turn Off Their Cameras
Have you ever been the only participant in a Zoom meeting who had their camera activated? Then you know how uncomfortable this feeling is. On the one hand, you feel like you’re being watched and, on the other hand, you don’t know who is watching you or whether someone is sitting in front of the other computer at all.
Therefore, the last zoom mistake that lecturers can make is to allow their viewers to turn off the camera permanently. It is outstanding as a speaker in a Zoom Call to ask your participants to activate their cameras for the reasons listed. This is especially true for training courses and conferences. It has a lot to do with being polite.
Of course, it is convenient to hide behind your picture or an abbreviation of letters. However, as a participant, think of a “normal” training course in a room: You wouldn’t hide behind an opaque wall there either.
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