For the benefit of those who are inexperienced with attending webinars or other virtual events online, or for webinar presenters who want to prepare themselves for an upcoming presentation, we have compiled this collection of best practices for attending and presenting a webinar.
Top 10 tips for web conferencing etiquette
- Connect 10-15 minutes early to allow time for setup.
- Check your WiFi/internet network beforehand.
- Remove clutter or personal items around you.
- Avoid background noise.
- Consider using a headset to reduce distractions.
- Keep your device (phone, computer, etc.) on mute unless you are speaking.
- Speak clearly, but not too loudly.
- Allow time for participants to ask questions and finish speaking.
- Limit any side conversations.
- Direct questions to a specific individual on the web conference.
Preparing for your web conference
If you have a presentation to show via video, test it out before the meeting to make sure it works properly.
- Make sure you are in a quiet space with the right lighting, so others can easily see you on camera when you’re speaking. Avoid having a bright light source behind you.
- Remove clutter or personal items in your environment that may distract others.
- Avoid background noise. This includes muting cellphones and turning off notification sounds on your computer.
Checking your technical equipment
- Ensure that you have a high-quality internet connection.
- Make sure your computer and all apps are up to date, so that your web conferencing software will be able to run correctly.
- Adjust your webcam to ensure other participants can see you.
- You may want to use a headset to reduce background noise and other distractions.
Communicating during your web conference
- Be punctual and introduce yourself when you arrive.
- Speak clearly and in a normal voice. Do not shout.
- Keep your microphone on mute if you are not actively engaged in a conversation to eliminate any potential distractions or background noise. Also, take notice of your microphone settings throughout the meeting, as you don’t want to start talking while you’re still on mute.
- Limit multitasking including side conversations and using other applications, especially when you’re on a video call. Others can easily tell when you are not completely involved.
Working effectively when web conferencing
- When you ask a question or request information, allow time for responses in case your web conferencing tool has a delay.
- Make sure to direct your questions to a specific individual in your meeting.
- Don’t interrupt other speakers while they are presenting. If you have a question that you don’t want to forget, there may be a chat window available for you to type in, so that it can be addressed later.
Adapted from Etiquette and best practices for web conferencing, Rutgers University, retrieved 7/27/2020 at https://it.rutgers.edu/knowledgebase/etiquette-and-best-practices-for-web-conferencing/