Given the current state of affairs, you are no doubt re-considering face to face/in person coaching conversations. Maintaining some form of contact with your coach, or the person you are coaching, may well be one of the few ways we have of staying sane in coming weeks and whilst some of you might be used to conference calls and Skyping, you may not have used them in a coaching context.
I came across this advice on how to have a good video conversation from Seth Godin, an amazing blogger, perceptive, provocative, original, insightful, a real iconoclast who has published a blog everyday for goodness knows how long.
I’ve summarised what he said here:
Sit close to the screen. Your face should fill most of it.
Use an external microphone or headset.
When you’re not talking, hit mute.
Don’t eat during the meeting.
When you’re on mute during an audio call, you can do whatever you want. But when you’re on mute on a video call, you need to act like you’re truly engaged. Nod your head. Focus on the screen. Don’t get up and feed your dog.
Don’t sit with the window behind you. A little effort on lighting goes a very long way.
When you’re talking, spend some time looking at the camera, not the screen. You’ll appear more earnest and honest this way.
When you’re talking, go slow. No one is going to steal your slot.
Don’t walk if you’re using a phone. And if you’re using a laptop, don’t put it on your lap.
As he says, these tips are obvious, generous and effective, and almost no one puts in the effort to consistently deliver on them.
If you want to go to the source, follow this link.
And if you want a bit of light relief, you might enjoy watching this video on how conference calls really shouldn’t work:
Every good wish to you and those you care about. Stay safe and well. And don't forget you can use the members' pages on this site to start conversations with colleagues, fellow coaches and coachees.