- You need an Internet connection, speakers and microphone
- Use a headset to replace the speakers and microphone as this removes background noise and lets you be heard clearly
- The on-screen experience varies depending on whether you are using PC, Mac, iPhone, Android or iPad. Ensure you specify what device you are using if you need advice
- In all cases. it is best to set up and test well before the meeting start time.
For overheads / screen sharing see the tutorials on this page: https://support.zoom.us/
- Everyone is watching the speaker just the same as a face to face meeting
- Ensure that you have good lighting for the face. The lighting should above or in front of you and be aimed at your face not from behind you.
- Put your face level with the camera. Not looking up, down or side on. This is a common issue for phone and iPad users resulting in the audience looking up towards your nostrils.
- Don’t read your speech, have notes at eye level and just to the side of the camera
- Everyone is watching your presentation just the same as if you are presenting to a room of people and you need to pay attention just the same speaking skills.
- Use more pause, vocal range and facial expression to compensate for the lack of stance and gestures
- Sit straight for better breathing and volume
- Place several books under your laptop to raise it so that you are looking into the camera
- Look directly at screen with eyes focussed at camera height.
- Avoid any background noise, like a fan, because it will be heard and a distraction.
Some differences that create difficulty on Zoom
- You are generally sitting down – best to sit about 10-12 inches from screen, with the light either above you or in front of you.
- Your face and eyes will be the visual focus of the listeners. – so the face must become mobile to express the feelings and emotion the speaker is seeking to have the listeners experience.
- Look directly at the camera and make eye contact with the other members. Remember the eyes are the mirrors of the soul, the speaker though their eyes can also express joy (eyes light up), sadness (eyes cloud over in pain, and the surrounds of the eyes furrow).
- Glasses can reflect light and make it difficult to see your eyes.
- You can portray joy, excitement, gladness, sadness, apprehension, prolonged fear and pain visually through the mobility of the face and eyes. Your emotion can be written all over your face and eyes in addition to the word pictures, sounds or emotions expressed in words.
- As well as the face and eyes we have the speakers voice. Our voice is our tool of trade. This is even truer on Zoom. Our voice and the way you use your voice to vary Tone, Tempo, volume and intensity (Energy) will be of vital important to your effectiveness
- If you sit back too far your face will appear quite small on the screen and your voice will sound a long way off and will be difficult to hear. If you stand up, and move back from the screen to use additional gestures make sure you increase the volume of your voice.
- As always when presenting, the Opening Sentence or paragraph and the Closing Sentence or paragraph – WILL BE VITAL - The closing sentence or paragraph needs to convey the one thing you want the listeners to do or remember.
- Sadly Gestures on Zoom are almost non-existent because our face needs to be so close to the screen to fill the screen. However, you can still make hand gestures from left to right of screen, or head gestures, or eye gestures.
- You can use verbal devices like alliteration (the same sound at the beginning of two or more words) A number of brand names use alliteration. Coco Cola, Donald Duck, Krispy Crème Donuts, Mickey Mouse, Wonder Woman. Alliteration can create rhythm and mood, e.g. repetition of the ‘S’ sound often suggests a snake like quality, implying slyness and danger.
- You can also use onomatopoeia, the word echoing sense – a word that looks like the sound it makes. Machine noises – honk, beep, vroom, clang, zap, boing. Animal names – cuckoo, whip-poor-will, whooping crane, chickadee, Impact sounds - boom, crash, whack, thump, bang, wham, biff, pow. Sounds of the voice – shush, giggle, growl, whine, blurt, whisper, hiss, a dog’s bark, a cat’s meow, a cow’s moo. Nature sounds – splash, drip, spray, whoosh, buzz, rustle.
- You can also use visual devices like word pictures and feeling devices by using words and phrases that touch the emotions.
- For clarity of speech, for clear enunciation and articulation you need to exaggerate the opening of the mouth the movement of the lips, the pausing and the completion of every word. For example Heard not -erd. Full articulation of vowels and consonants become of vital importance on Zoom.
- The component parts of the voice are the mouth, the lips, the teeth, the tongue, the hard and soft palate, the pausing and the breathing. Each of us has the ability to vary our Tone, Tempo, Volume, Intensity, and pausing depending on our breathing. If our breathing is high in the chest, we will speak in a high tone, a loud volume and a fast tempo. The Voice will also parallel the facial expression. This mode is appropriate for the expression of emotions like joy, excitement, enthusiasm, anger, fear and whenever using descriptive language. If our breathing is in 'mid chest’, we will speak in a mid-tone, a mid-volume and a mid-tempo. The voice will also parallel the facial expression. This mid mode is appropriate for dialogue, ‘’he said, she said, have you heard‘, as well as all auditory words. Mid tone is most appropriate for the gravitas required for a eulogy. If our breathing is low in the chest, we will speak in a low tone, a low or soft volume and a slow tempo. Again the face and eyes will parallel the tone of voice to be congruent. This mode is appropriate for the expression of emotions like pity, sympathy, condolences, helpfulness, reverence, love, awe, sadness , grief contempt, scorn, torture, great pain.