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Zoom Zero to Hero

by Matt Schreiber

Conducting business from home doesn’t have to feel overwhelming. Get your Zoom skills to the next level with this easy to follow guide. You’ll go from feeling like a Zoom Zero to a virtual conferencing hero! 

There are so many video conferencing software options available right now. Microsoft Teams, Google Hangouts, Skype, even Facebook has an option. Our teams at Cy and WBI prefer to use Zoom. This platform has a simple, clean design with lots of great features even on the free plan. With Zoom, you can host up to 100 participants for 40 minutes for absolutely free. And there is no trial period, you can use the free version unlimited as long as you like. 

The Basics

Before you get started with with first video conference, get your space ready. Here is your basic checklist to make sure you look like a rockstar.

  • Good Lighting. Make sure you are taking your Zoom calls from a well-lit space. Open the blinds, turn on the lights. Cameras use light to capture images so make sure your lights are in front of you, not behind you. 
  • Tidy Up. Make your space look organized. Your clients don’t want to see your laundry or dirty dishes piled up in the background. 
  • Enable “Do Not Disturb.” Avoid distracting notification alerts on your device while in a meeting. Exit any programs that you don’t need open and disable notifications on anything open. 
  • Look Pro. Yes, we are working from home, so you probably aren’t putting on your suit every morning. But, you should still take the time to brush your hair and put on a clean shirt. Dressing the part is an easy way to remind your clients they are working with a professional, even if they are working from home. 

Key Meeting Settings

Zoom got a bad rap at the start of 2020 for some security holes. Since then, they have made efforts to improve. There are many settings options on Zoom, but let’s highlight some of the important features. 

  • Don’t share your meeting number publicly. To avoid getting “Zoom bombed” with unwanted guests, avoid sharing your meeting ID publicly online. Using a randomly generated Meeting ID versus your personal link is another way to protect your meeting. 
  • Use the waiting room. This feature requires you to let your meeting attendees in, helping to keep unwanted attendees out. 
  • Disable attendee screen-sharing. With this feature enabled, your meeting attendees will not be able to hijack the discussion by sharing this screen. This is especially important if you have a large gathering. 
  • Set attendees mic to mute and video off upon entry. This allows your meeting attendees to get settled while logging on without interrupting any discussions already in place. They can then unmute themselves and start their videos when the meeting gets started. 
Watch this video to learn more about meeting controls.

Remember, as the host, you have the ability to mute or boot anyone in your meeting at any time. So rest assured, you can conduct your business on Zoom without too much risk. By following this simple checklist, you will look like a Zoom Hero instead of a Zoom Zero. 

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