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"Work From Anywhere" Tip: Test Your A/V

Community Manager
Community Manager
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Whether you're an old pro at working in unusual or remote locations or you're new to it, it can be useful to keep some good practices in mind to help be productive, secure and healthy.  With that in mind, we'll be sharing some tips from our own internal experts and from you, our Egnyte community members. 

Today's Tip: Take time to periodically verify your connection speeds, lighting and sound to make sure you come through clear. 

In an environment where you only work remotely once in a while, you might not think twice about your teleconferencing capabilities, and in fact, it has become increasingly more common for workers to work outside open office environments on days when they need more focus (and fewer meetings). But in an extended remote working situation, especially one necessitated by emergencies or disasters that threaten business continuity, being able to collaborate and converse with coworkers as "face-to-face" as possible is important. 

The only issue is, effective video conferencing requires a stable connection and a spot in your workspace that has decent lighting and as little sound pollution as possible. Joining by camera in a dimly lit room or one that's noisy and full of echoes can be distracting for your colleagues and less effective for you. Here are a few tips: 

  • Test your internet speeds, especially before important meetings or presentations. Some ISPs provide speed test sites, but Google also provides a quick speed test from its search page upon searching "Internet speed test." Lagging speed can be caused by anything from poor connectivity in that area of your home/workspace to equipment issues and more. Leave yourself enough time to troubleshoot in advance of those critical meetings.
  •  Test/preview your video quality. This can also reveal connection issues, but may also show you things like poor lighting, personal items in the background, or other distracting factors you can eliminate. 
  • Test your mic and speakers. If it's difficult to hear or be heard, calling in via phone may be an option (if you are on a computer). If you do this, be sure you are not broadcasting through your computer AND phone to avoid echoes and high-pitched feedback noises.
  • Above all, be prepared for things to go wrong, even if you've already tested. Have a backup plan and be flexible if things don't go smoothly.

It can be awkward to get accustomed to frequent video conferences, but with the usual quality issues out of the way, seeing (and being seen by) your colleagues can help increase connection, boost morale, and ensure engagement in meetings. 

Have you experienced any teleconferencing challenges or blunders? Head over to the forums and share your experience, or your tips for teleconferencing success!

 

Photo by Petr Macháček on Unsplash