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On this page you will find answers to questions people send in to The Presentation Maestro.
Michael shares more than 30 years of experience and knowledge in answering.
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Tips on video conferencing and speaking on Skype or Zoom

Hi it’s Michael Trigg here of the Presentation Maestro and this question comes from an old client of mine and he asks “Have you’ve got any tips about presenting on Skype particularly for those who do quite a lot of remote working?” And I do. First thing to remember about Skype is that ,as you all doubtless know, there’s only a tiny representation of you coming across on the screen on the computer or your iPhone – so the audience have only got this [indicates face and shoulders] to see.
Therefore it needs to come alive a little.
So my first tip would be to smile more when you’re on Skype. Now I personally find this quite difficult. I’ve made quite a lot of these videos. When I look at them afterwards I think I’ve been smiling but I look totally po-faced a lot of the time so do remember to smile more.
Second tip would be to feel free in fact not just feel free… use your hands as you talk even though they may be off-camera because the way you use your hands naturally not only affects the voice and your voice tonality and makes it more interesting but it
facilitates eloquence and freedom of thought. So your thoughts are more likely to be more free-flowing if you use your hands.
And the third tip is to look at the camera lens – that tiny little glass black dot that’s where you need to be looking. And the biggest mistake a lot of people do is to look at the screen of the iPhone or the computer because they can see the other people there but
that’s not where they are – they’re actually through that lens – so if you’re communicating on Skype, when you’re talking look directly into the lens.
Now I’d like to broaden this little, since I’ve got the opportunity, to talk about video conferencing. And this normally happens in a boardroom or even in a small theatre environment when there are cameras pointing at you but also broadcasting around the world to offices in Delhi or Sydney or New York and the biggest mistake I think people make with video conferencing is they forget the
camera and they just look at the audience in the room or the theatre. You’ve also got audiences if they’re tuning in through videoconference in Bombay and Berlin and Cape Town – so look at the camera.
Find out where the cameras are, so you can look at them, also warn your audience that you will occasionally be looking off at the camera to address Delhi or Bombay or wherever it is so they know what you’re doing. And then those audiences abroad will feel
more involved a more engaged in what you’re saying because you will be looking at them, and your face will appear on the screen looking at them – so that’s one really important tip I give for video conferencing.
So that’s both Skype and video conferencing in one go. Hope you found that useful and I look forward to seeing you on the next one.