Making eye contact during video conferences

Monday, November 5 2012

The biggest advantage video conferencing software has over other meeting technology, like telephone calls, is that these applications allow users to make eye contact. An ocular connection can help parties understand each other and ultimately improve the line of conversation between the parties.

Maintaining eye contact is important as it conveys confidence and sincerity. Avoiding someone's gaze can be off-putting and frustrating to the other conversant. Unfortunately, a great deal of people look at the screen when video conferencing and not into their webcams.

It may feel awkward at first to look at a camera instead of your screen, but there's a noticeable difference. When you gaze at your computer's display, you're looking down and that's how the audience sees you. They can't see your eyes because you're hiding them.

Whether you're hosting a webinar or completing a remote job interview, it's important to simulate a physical meeting as much as possible. This means making eye contact by looking into your webcam.

This is especially important in business applications of conferencing technology. It can appear unprofessional to not look at clients or associates, which could ultimately undermine the meeting.