The COVID-19 crisis has forced offices to shutter around the country, and as a result, more people are working from home than ever. That means we're seeing more of coworkers' bedrooms, pets, and pajamas than we ever imagined.
If you're navigating the dos and don'ts of working remotely for the first time, you don't necessarily need to choose between professionalism and comfortable pants. Just keep a few tips in mind to make your transition from being alone on the couch to hopping onto a last-minute Zoom video call as smooth as possible.
Just like in real life, wearing the right outfit can go a long way when it comes to looking professional for your colleagues. Standards aren't as high when you're telecommuting, so even switching out your T-shirt for a business-casual top when you expect to be on video can be enough to show you put effort into your appearance. And unless you plan on moving around on the video call, don't bother putting on pants that don't have an elastic waistband.
If you want to look good on video, there are a few things to keep in mind that don't apply to in-person meetings. Position your computer so you're eye-level with the camera, placing it on a stack of books if necessary, and find a room with good lighting so your coworkers can actually see you. And to avoid getting any unpleasant surprises when you see yourself in a group meeting, check how you look on camera privately before calling in.
You can find tips for looking professional on a video conference call below. And for more ways to optimize your telecommuting experience, check out these habits to practice.
- Sit facing a window for natural lighting.
- Wear a business-casual top.
- Choose clothes with neutral tones.
- Position your webcam so it's level with your eyes.
- Sit farther from the camera rather than closer.
- If you're having a bad hair day, pull it back with a hair tie.
- Keep on comfortable pants if you can avoid standing up.
- Find a private room to minimize background distractions.
- See how you look on your computer camera before joining a video call.
- If you have limited time to put on makeup, focus on brows and cheeks to give your face dimension.