How to be Personable Over a Zoom Call

Are you becoming familiar with online meeting formats? As we continue to stay at home and conduct work and school online, many of us will use Zoom or another internet software as we connect with teachers, students, coworkers, and clients. While there are many benefits of an online format, one drawback is the inherent struggle to connect with others. It is challenging to feel connected through only a video camera. However, it is definitely possible to be personable over online formats, and here are some ideas to get you started.

  1. Maintain a welcoming atmosphere, beginning with a kind introduction. Introduce yourself and exchange pleasantries at the beginning of the meeting. For instance, if you are conducting an interview, designate the first three to five minutes to introduce yourself and get to know your interviewee. Not only will this put your interviewee at ease, but it will also give you an idea of what working with this person on a day-to-day basis will look like by allowing you to hear their candid responses. If you are the one being interviewed, exude a welcoming atmosphere in your responses. Smile, and show genuine interest in your interviewer and their company. Instead of rushing through any opening introductions, answer thoughtfully and warmly. Since your personality must be communicated via the internet, make an extra effort to smile and answer in a kind and warm tone of voice. Additionally, take care to film yourself in a distraction-free environment, with a simple background.
  2. Stay engaged the entire time. It is now easier than ever to have multiple tabs open on your laptop at once. The people you’re meeting with will be able to tell if you are not fully engaged and focused. It is crucial to stay engaged in order to seem personable, because people need to know that you truly care about them and their company, project, or idea. Communicating that you care about people by staying engaged helps people to connect with you. If you think the meeting is wrapping up, instead of mentally reviewing the next item on your to-do list, choose to stay engaged and focused by maintaining eye contact, nodding your head, and sitting up straight. These body language signs will show that you are dedicated, and that you care about being fully present. When your body is fully present, your mind will stay more engaged, and the people you are meeting with will feel valued and respected. This will help people to better connect with you on a personal level.
  3. Give helpful and relevant feedback. LeadLiaison highlights the importance of giving feedback during phone calls, and this same importance translates to video meetings. LeadLiasion explains that by providing feedback to others, you demonstrate that you are listening well. This feedback can be verbal, but can also include simple non-verbal responses such as nodding your head and smiling. By showing the people you are meeting with that you are attentive and focused, you will connect with them better as you both are on the same page.

Calling over the internet can seem intimidating, but remember that you are simply connecting with others, just as you would in an in-person setting. By maintaining a welcoming atmosphere, taking care to make extra effort in your verbal and non-verbal responses, and providing clear and valuable feedback, you will create personal connections in every online meeting you attend.

By Carissa Joy Burns

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