Here are some tips on how you can look better in a zoom call. As, let’s face it, since the pandemic started, we’re all using some form of video conferencing tool. Love it or loathe it, it’s here to stay. So why not embrace the new technology and use it to help you stay visible and communicate those key messages?
First of all, think about where you are. Whatever you do, don’t sit with a window behind you, as we simply won’t see your face. Do sit in front of a window, so natural light is shining on both sides of your face. Then you will stand out in the frame, and people will focus on you rather than anything else in the picture. Do be aware, though, that on very sunny days, it might be too bright, and also the light will be harsher, so you might get some shadows on your face. Keep an eye out for this, and if so, try and move your desk back a bit from the window so that the light is softer. And if you’re having trouble getting the right light, consider ring lights or soft boxes. These are the options if you’re worried about the budget.
Try to look directly into the camera when you’re speaking – not at the many faces you’ll see in your screen. Put a post-it note where your camera is, to make you remember to look in the right place. That way, everyone will think you’re looking at them, as you would be in a real life conversation.
My other tip is to ensure your camera is horizontally on the same eye-line as your eyes – so you aren’t looking up or down onto the viewer. That way, neither you, not they have a position of power.
And please remember to move any strange stuff in the background that might distract from what you’re saying. Washing and general mess is a no-no.
Lastly, I am not a fan of the virtual background. I think unless you have a great, well lit green screen, they look blocky and weird and I’d rather see people as the real them, in their actual place of work, even if that is a bedroom or a kitchen. We all know we’re working from home, so don’t sweat it.