From emails to video chats, online communication has rapidly become a norm in today’s business world. Online communication is used daily and has a straightforward etiquette that, unfortunately, many people do not follow. Here are a few pointers to keep your online communication clear and professional:
Choose a Simple Font
Many people use different fonts for their emails and instant messages to set them apart from other messages. However, it is usually best to send messages in a simple, easy-to-read font. You also want to be mindful of sending messages that are fully capitalized, as you do not want your message to have an aggressive or angry tone.
Use a Professional Tone
Punctuation and spelling are also incredibly important! When communicating in a business setting, be sure to have an appropriate style and tone. You cannot assume that a potential business partner or new client would appreciate a message as casual as one that says, “What’s up?” Be mindful of who you are writing to and always remain professional in your communication.
Virtual communication is great, convenient and has transformed the way we conduct our lives, but it also has some danger to it. Because online communication is so accessible and can be done at the touch of a button, it is that much more important to take the time to construct a well thought-out message. In times of conflict or tension, settle down before replying to any emails or messages. You always want to portray yourself as rational, professional and appropriate.
Also, when discussing a subject of importance, always be well-informed about the matter. If you are referencing information that you found from a source, such as a book or web article, cite it and give credit to the author or source!
Prepare for Video Conferences
Video conferences are a great tool for businesses to use. They allow managers and workers to talk to clients, employees, potential customers or interviewees face-to-face, even if they are in a different state or country!
Before you begin the video conference, be sure that all equipment is in proper working condition and is set up correctly. Remember that you are appearing on a camera, so details such as proper lighting and positioning yourself on screen correctly will play a major role in your professionalism during the conference.
Use Professional Etiquette on Camera
Video conferences should be taken as seriously as any other in-person meeting or interview, so be sure to use the same etiquette as you would for that occasion. This etiquette and behavior should include appropriate dress and punctuality. Take the necessary measures to ensure that you are in an environment that appears professional. Also, consider taking notes throughout the conference. It is a great way to remember different points of the conversation and allows you to have written material to look back on if needed! Make sure to schedule the video conference during a time when you are least likely to have disturbances.
Body language is just as important in a video conference as it is in a face-to-face meeting! Maintaining eye contact with the camera is crucial, as it allows you to appear as if you are making eye contact with the speaker. One final rule of thumb to follow: If you would not do it in a face-to-face conversation, do not do it in a video conference!
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