By: First Union | Date:
How to Use Zoom Like A Pro: A Few Tips and Tricks
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Within the past few months, the word Zoom has gone from relative obscurity to becoming a household staple. Whether people are chatting with friends, holding a virtual birthday party (or wedding/), or engaged in meeting for work, the platform has taken the globe by storm during the first half of 2020. Traditionally, it was largely about being used for work; however, the pandemic has certainly changed that dynamic. So for those who still may be new to Zoom, we wanted to offer a few tips and tricks for using the platform like a seasoned professional.
First off, you might want to tidy up that workspace at home if Zoom is primarily used for work-related tasks. Clutter can be quite distracting. Zoom also allows you to use backgrounds. It could be fun to attend a meeting while at the beach for example. Never hurts to add a bit of levity. Beyond experimenting with the background, there are of course a few key strategies for using Zoom like a pro…
1. Check yourself
Since the beginning of the pandemic especially, we have all seen the funny videos gone viral of people attending Zoom meetings in let's just say awkward ways. Check yourself. There's nothing wrong with testing the camera out, seeing how you appear, and ensuring there are no wardrobe malfunctions of which to speak. On a computer—be it Windows or Mac—just open the Zoom app, click on Settings, and opt for Video. This will enable you to see precisely what the camera is seeing.
2. Test the audio
It isn't just what you look like that's important in a Zoom meeting. Of course, you want to make sure that the audio is functioning as it should. Make sure you've selected the preferred setup. So for example, if you have a mic/headset you need to ensure it is selected for both speaker and microphone before the meeting begins, otherwise you could encounter all types of technical glitches.
3. Mute when needed
Zoom etiquette suggests that when you are not speaking, you should mute your mic. Why? Most practically, because background noise from your home—a dog barking, baby crying, what have you, could interrupt the flow of the meeting. By the same token, you want to be sure you know exactly how to jump back in and unmute when you are called upon to speak. All you need to do to this end is to hold down the space bar to unmute.
4. See all present
The default is for Zoom to show you who is currently speaking. If however, you do want to see everyone attending the meeting, you can select a gallery view. This will then display a grid showing all participants—up to a max of 49.
5. Record your meeting
Often great ideas are circulating at meetings. However, you sometimes lose the thread of those ideas; Zoom makes it super easy to record your meetings. Simply click the record button at the bottom of the window. You can then either record to a computer or record it to the cloud.
There are a ton of things you can do with Zoom. As mentioned, workplace meetings to virtual cocktail hours are now conducted via the platform. Knowing how to use it is only going to become more and more relevant in the months and years to come.