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Online Collaboration Etiquette

Following these rules of etiquette can lead to a significantly improved virtual meeting experience.

  • Mute your phone/mic when you are not speaking.
  • Make frequent eye contact with the camera.
  • When meeting from your laptop, be aware that other participants will likely be able to hear typing on your keyboard, as built in mics are sensitive.
  • Be aware of your surroundings. If you are meeting in your office and the hallway gets heavy traffic, consider closing the door. If you are in an open office area such as cubicles, using a headset will provide less distraction for cube-mates and reduce background noise for conferencing participants.
  • Be aware of remote participants. If a meeting occurs in a small conference room with a whiteboard, remember the remote attendees cannot see your whiteboard.
  • Don't interrupt other speakers. Unlike an in person meeting, talking over each other is not decipherable. Speak slowly and clearly. Do not respond to a question until the other person has completed their question.
  • Keep side conversation to a minimum (preferably you should avoid altogether).
  • Avoid eating or chewing gum.
  • Dress appropriately. Just because you are not physically in the meeting room or office, you should still maintain a professional appearance.
  • Be punctual and introduce yourself so that you can be sure everyone in the room knows who you are. This is especially important if there is not video. You should not assume that others will recognize your voice.
  • Introductions are often done before an in person meeting starts. Likewise one should do introductions when meeting online.
  • Keep body movements to a minimum. It can be distracting on the video and it can also cause side noise (such as a squeaky chair).