How to Host High Quality Video Conferences in 2021

Video Conference

Video conferences have pretty much become a staple of communication in today’s workforce, due to the rising number of companies moving their employees to remote work. These high-quality conferencing platforms have kept us all connected even through one of the worst pandemics of the last 200 years, and will continue to do so as we move past the Coronavirus and into the future.

Hosting a high-quality video conference in 2021 looks a lot different than it did 3 years ago. Let’s take a look at some of the steps you can take to host the best conference call possible in 2021.

Ditch the Free Platform

With the rise of video conferences came free services that attracted millions of users overnight. If we’re being honest, however, many of those free platforms simply aren’t designed with businesses in mind. Some of the biggest platforms in the country lack the professional, polished look of business-standard conferencing platforms.

If you want to give your business the best professional look, you’ll want to ditch your free meeting platform and move to a premium business service. Why? Well, to begin with, you’ll get access to so many more features. Most business-class platforms include features like:

● Operator-assisted calls
● Webinar software
● Live streaming platforms
● Unlimited calls
● Global access
 
Just think of the possibilities for your business if you had access to something like webinar software. You could take your courses to the next level by hosting high-quality webinars from the same software you use to conduct meetings!

The bottom line is that while free is great in the short-term, only premium business-class services can provide you with the highest-quality professional meeting software for meetings, webinars, and so much more.

Treat Your Meetings Like You’re In a Meeting Room

One of the best tips we can offer has to do with the way you run your meetings. The quality of a video meeting isn’t just in its high-definition video and audio and stunning business-class conferencing software. There’s more to a meeting than meets the eye, and you’ve got to consider how you’ve been doing things so far.

For starters, meetings should be treated the same, whether they’re in-person or over a video conference. This means a few things, including:

● Dressing appropriately
● Using an agenda
● Setting team goals
● Arriving on time
● Waiting your turn to speak
● Giving everyone a chance to participate
● Ending the meeting on time

Longer meetings tend to be far more exhausting, so try to keep your meeting times to a minimum whenever possible. A good rule to follow is that meetings should always fall under one hour, with the preferable length sitting at about 45 minutes. That’s plenty of time to allow everyone to talk, cover important points, and avoid meeting burnout/exhaustion.

Use the Right Camera and Microphone

Now let’s get into some of the technical details of hosting great meetings. First and foremost, consider your camera and microphone. That old webcam that’s been sitting on your desk since Windows Vista probably won’t cut it anymore. The great thing is that most smartphones have a good camera on them, and can connect to video meetings with a link. This serves to make things more convenient and prevents you from browsing on your phone during a meeting.

Your microphone and camera should both be troubleshooted before any meetings begin. Make sure everything is in working order. Take a simple video of yourself talking on your phone or desktop/laptop to ensure you’ve got it right.

If you need new webcams or mics, check out this list for 2021: Best webcams 2021: top picks for working from home

Get the Lighting Right

Lighting is everything when it comes to video. A good rule to follow is to have a decently bright light (but not so bright it’s blinding) pointed at your face from directly in front of you. Natural light works the best, so you can even position yourself in front of a window during a sunny day. Or, you can use your desk lamp or overhead light.

Try to avoid light sources from behind you, as they can create a silhouette effect and no one can see your face. Additionally, side lighting creates a shadow on just one side of the face, obscuring half of what a viewer needs to see.

Choose a Good Environment

Perhaps the most important thing to do in order to ensure a high-quality conference is to choose a good environment to host or attend the meeting from. That means avoiding busy places like coffee shops and bookstores when you’re entering a meeting. If you’re at home, make sure you can go to a room where you won’t be bothered—preferably one with a closed, locked door. This is especially important if you have kiddos or pets at home that can serve as distractions.

The Bottom Line

Hosting a high-quality meeting only requires a few simple steps. The rest is up to you! Remember to always mute yourself, use an agenda, and troubleshoot issues beforehand. Retire your old webcam and upgrade for high definition audio and video, and choose the best environment for maximum peace and quiet.