What’s up all you champs in training. In this article, I’m gonna share with you 3 things all of you should have if you plan on working remotely in a team environment. They are not so obvious because these tools are not standard issue from HR. However, if you leverage these tools, you’re going to reek so much confidence and power that your boss and colleague will notice you for sure.
Some of you already felt pretty confident about web-conferencing
but as you move up the food chain, you’ll notice that important people always look relaxed and comfortable, and yet they still look well put together and in control. You don’t need a thousand-dollar suit and 12 years of experience to get there. In fact, 100 bucks will get you there, easy! Here’s how:
Get your self a physical notebook
As a good team player, organization is table stakes. You’ll notice that the higher you move up an organization, the more people have notebooks on them at all times. It’s because computers are distracting and make you look like an ass who cares more about your own work than the group’s. It’s distracting when you’re in a live meeting, it’s even worse when you’re banging away on a web meeting; your mic WILL pick it up!
Thus my first item suggestion for you is a pen & notebook. It is such an undervalued tool, most companies give them away from free! The interesting thing about a notebook is that it’s also physically challenging to write at typing speed, so it’s also a mental training exercise for yourself to decipher what is worth writing down. You should definitely create or leverage a note-taking system so that you can capture outlines, nuances, actionables.
There’s also an interesting study out there that proved that you focus better when you’re doodling, so that’s why my first recommendation is a simple notebook & pen set.
Up your presentation game on the cheap
The 2nd grouping is about presentation. I don’t mean things you need for you to do a presentation; that is a whole complete can of different worms. I mean the presentation of yourself. When you log on, and your video is on and now you’re having a face to face interaction that’s even more close up and intimate than live meetings.
Yes, especially if you’re really good at your job and your colleagues are already friends, you can go hobo-chic. I’ve been guilty of those crimes myself. But if you’re in a meeting with individuals that matter. Like when you’re external facing, or when you have your boss or bosses boss on the call, you want to present yourself like your goal in life is to be somebody.
First of all, since this is a web-conf, pants are no longer required, so I just saved you 50 bucks right there (you’re welcome). You don’t need to spend much on your top either, though. I recommend a fitted polo. Unless you have matchstick arms (skinny picture) or you need to hide what you ate for thanksgiving (fat picture), a suit jacket is completely overkill.
A polo or lightweight sweater is professional, it has JUST enough character to make you look like you care about how you present yourself. I think the best part is that it gives you an opportunity to rep a touch of personality. You can do the baby elephant thing, the sheep in a bow thing, and obviously, I’m biased towards our 11ish stock, because the logo represents that I am an apprentice to the craft of becoming more. And we specifically designed it so that the logo isn’t obnoxious but obvious. It also comes through crystal clear in web conferences, which is a sick feature that most other brands fail at. (wtf is that image)
For the third and final recommendation, I want to pitch you a concept before I make any product suggestions. When you’re in a meeting, it behooves you not to be loud but memorable. It’d be horrible if your bosses remember your ideas but forget who gave them those good ideas. They just might accidentally make that good idea their own. This is why you should have an item that demonstrates personality. It’ll help you stand out and it’s also a great conversation starter for before and after the meetings.
In a workplace, there are usually two ways to demonstrate personality, you either have a lot of something or you have a single really nice thing. So for example, if you have a lot of different pens and you always take notes with different ones, then you’re going to stand out as that guy and you can jump into an easy story about why that’s your thing like maybe you like to draw or you travel a lot and love stealing them from hotels as souvenirs.
In my case, I have a passion for watches, and I have a whole range of watches that I’ve bought as milestone markers or just out of pure fascination, so that’s part of my schtick. And the great thing about these two things is that for both in-person and video conferences, it’s very hard for them to be obnoxious. It’s there because it’s a part of who you are. It just happens to also be in the somebody important’s periphery while you’re talking, or writing, or gesturing, etc…
So that wraps up the 3 must-haves for web conferences. Even if you’re an independent contributor, you have to work with colleagues, clients, and probably bosses. If you plan on being successful, there is just no way around working with people. And to make it work, especially in modern work environments and nature catastrophes looming over us, you have to get used to doing web conferences right. Remember guys, rules are meant to be broken. What’s important is to be yourself, be bold, and don’t be an ass.
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