COVID-19 has brought the global population a series of challenges, and it has changed the meaning of life as we know it. With all non-essential employees working from online meetings, conferences, and webinars that used to be fairly uncommon, concepts have become the ‘new normal.’ Human beings, especially the participating members of the workforce, are faced with an extraordinarily unusual situation compelling them to adapt to the changing circumstances as a survival technique.
Google will be allowing employees to keep working from homes until the summer of 2021. If more enterprises follow in Google’s footsteps, it may be a relief to be able to work at home without continually worrying about contracting the virus. However, others may have to find ways to overcome the challenges of remote working and unlocking online presence.
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Who Is Bogdan Manta?
This episode of Let’s Humanize The Workplace hosted by the workplace wellness advocate Vivian Acquah highlights a meaningful conversation on how to unlock your online presence. This episode features a fantastic guest, Bogdan Manta. Bogdan is a Live Communication Strategist, Negotiations & an L&D Experience Specialist. Bogdan’s background comes from neuro-marketing, (corporate) communications, social psychology, and multifaceted program management, combined with 17 years of complex productions and events. (Also listen or watch this episode to learn more about #ThePlant and see why I have a love/hate relationship with #ThePlant)
Hosting An Online Training
Talking about the major differences between in-person workshops and virtual workshops, Bogdan Manta shared his expert opinion: “. Facilitating offline is a completely different thing than facilitating online during a webinar training. Offline, you have a multidimensional environment, and everyone is around you and online, everyone is on your screen. This means the way you’re scanning your participants is completely different. The way you read their facial gestures online is much more important than offline.”
Online Meeting Challenges
The advanced virtual world as brilliant as it is comes with its fair share of challenges for those new to online meetings. Many people living amongst us believe conventional meeting settings to be more effective. This pandemic is indeed especially difficult for such people. Vivian Acquah shares: “Many people feel a bit challenged regarding technology and limited by their tech skills. To those people, I just want to say hire a moderator. I’ve been moderating a lot of live sessions, so you don’t have to deal with the technical stress. I have all the technical stress. The only thing that you have to do is log on, show up, and do your magic.”
Essential Ingredients For Online Presence
Transparency, authenticity, and vulnerability is key to an offline or an online presence. It allows one to show their human aspect to enable the audience to connect with them at a higher level and relate to their encounters. As Bogdan Manta eloquently puts it: “The more authentic you are online and offline, the more will benefit your business, your professional profile, and everything. Many people don’t understand that if you are too much of an expert and don’t showcase any human side, soft skills, or emotions, people will not be able to connect with you. You need to bring your personal experiences. People want to learn about what you went through, how you experienced it, what you learned from it, and what you can share with others.”
Focus On Positive Things
When it comes to providing your expertise in the form of online content, criticism becomes a part of your routine. To exploit your utmost online presence potential, you must pay attention to constructive criticism while not letting it get to you. Try to create a wall of positivity around you, and do not let criticism hold you back. “You will never make everybody happy. Some people will not like it because it is their taste. Some people will not like it because it’s not the right time or the right moment. And some people will not like it because it’s so darn good that they hate you for it. Focus on constructive criticism, positive things, and helping people rise.” –says Bogdan Manta regarding criticism.
Create A Favorable Impact
There are a few significant factors that you need to always keep in mind to have a favorable impact on your online presence. When you provide content online, be sure to make it relevant, high-quality, and value-adding, helping and engaging your target audience. As Bogdan Manta shares his take on key ingredients for an impactful online presence, “The first thing is to offer more value than you are paid for and offer more value than people expect. Show kindness, and not only show kindness but also give kindness when you learn, make sure that you teach others, or share the knowledge and pay it forward.”
Invest In The Right Tools
To achieve your online presence objectives, you must take care of the logistics beforehand. Make sure you acquire all the equipment necessary to hold a smooth running webinar. In the words of Vivian Acquah: “Invest in a good camera, especially now that you are online. It doesn’t have to be the most expensive, but do know that quality is important. You never know where you might use your video, it might end up in a showreel, you might end up with a new prospect or lead, or it might end up on LinkedIn Live.”
Avoid These Mistakes!
While online conferences are quite convenient to gather up your colleagues and ensure that your operations keep running, there are a few mistakes that everyone participating in such a conference should avoid. If you are heading an online meeting, know that when you make a minor mistake like pressing a wrong button or anything as such, it is highly likely that no one noticed except you, and you can probably fix it before anyone does notice. Having your camera on and switching between apps rather than paying attention to the speaker is one online mistake people make. Bogdan Manta says: “If you do only want to listen, switching the camera off, it is much more disrespectful to the host and the other people to have your eyes wandering all over the place as a participant than just switching off your camera.”
Your Voice Is Important!
When there is a lack of physical environment, and people cannot see your body language and gestures, your words and voice become your most useful tools. You need to utilize these to convey not only your verbal message but also your feelings. As Bogdan Manta points out: “Our voice is now so much more important. Because your language is no longer there, you only have one-third of you. And now people are listening to you. You establish a rapport. You develop emotions; you develop neurotransmitters in your participant’s mind; everything or a lot happens with your voice.”
Tips For Online Job Interviews
One major inconvenience that has emerged as a result of the pandemic is online job interviews. An in-person job interview allows the seeker to depend on gestures, posture, and body language to convey their personality; this has been rendered pretty much impossible with online interviews. Here are a few tips Bogdan Manta shared to attain a successful interviewing process: “Make sure that you are sitting and looking into the camera, meaning that you make eye contact, and you’re actively listening to the question. Make sure the light is good and be on time. Give the interviewer the information they need, not the information that you think that they want to hear.”
Bogdan’s Wish For 2025
Technological advancement allows us to work from the comfort and safety of our homes in a manner that would have been impossible two decades ago. However, the entire online meeting phenomenon is new to many of us. We are all trying to adapt to this sudden change and make the best out of it.
Continuing the tradition of ending the episode with a hope or a wish, Bogdan Manta expressed his ambition: “It’s not my wish, it’s my belief and my will. That’s the reason I am doing it together with everyone involved. We want to help people be kind to one. Because the moment there’s more kindness, the moment there’s more perspective, the moment there’s more context, the moment there’s more understanding. We have a higher chance of humanizing the workplace of collaborating better in a multi multifunctional, multicultural, multifaceted across teams, cultures, industries, and so on”.
Don’t forget to visit The Essential Workshop, where Bogdan Manta, Vivian Acquah, and different experts share inspiring workshops to amplify your professional development.
Host: Vivian Acquah
As a Workplace Wellness Advocate, Vivian advises managers on how to keep their team members healthy, happy, and safe by using a holistic approach called workplace wellness. She is also the digital strategist for this live stream production.
This live stream will be broadcasted via LinkedIn, Facebook, Youtube & Twitter/Periscope simultaneously. Involve your audience by using live streams! Would you like to know more?
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