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Microsoft Teams Meetings: Why you should join with video on

May 1, 2020 by Rob Wilcox

join Microsoft Teams meetings with video on

You could say that I’m a Working from Home Veteran. Over the past 8 years in my career at Quadrotech, I’ve worked from my home office. Sometimes it’s hard, sometimes it’s easy. I go through phases of trying different places to work, different equipment, different working hours, and so on.

But there is one thing that I always try to keep as a constant.

When I join an online meeting using Microsoft Teams (because why would you use anything else?) I always join with my video on.

Why should you join Microsoft Teams Meetings with video on?

Well, let me explain how your Teams Meeting might work if you don’t join with video. Three colleagues might get together and start discussing an important work topic, but the online meeting is audio-only.

Each person will have something to say but won’t be able to visualize social cues and emotions from each member of the team. For instance, someone may have made a disapproving facial expression, or they may be confused, their head might be shaking in disagreement, or alternatively nodding for agreement.

This impacts your ability to determine whether your message is being understood by your colleagues, and therefore, can lead to problematic miscommunication later down the line. You can read more about communication in Paul Robichaux’s blog on Practical 365 here.

Similarly, with slightly busier Teams Meetings, your colleagues are likely to be on ‘mute’ whilst the other is talking. Without video as well as mute, you will have even less aptitude to pick up on your colleagues’ expressions in the meeting, for example, ‘yeah’ in agreement or ‘ooh’ if they aren’t sure.

Your meeting attendees also might be a start to work on something else, and you can’t see them. They’ll be doing this quietly and it’s likely you’re getting a sense that they’re not paying attention – and you’re probably right! We’ve all been there though, and when we’re up against a deadline, it’s natural for your mind to wander, especially if you’re not face-to-face with the meeting presenter.

Learn more: How to Rapidly Enable Working From Home

Overall, I feel having your camera off can make your meeting less productive than intended. However, with video on, it’s a different scenario because your team will be more engaged knowing their teammates can see them, and you will be able to get a better idea of how you’re being received.

Another great reason to put your video on during a Teams meeting is that it can also be a hundred times more fun. Without being too nosey, you get to learn a bit more about your colleagues. In a recent meeting, we spotted a few guitars in the background, which was a great way of sharing our similar musical interests.

That is unless they’ve got background blur on or have used the new Background Effects feature. It does mean that you have to wear something other than your pajamas (top half up anyway!).

Finally, think of it like this. If you were office-based and you went to a colleague to discuss something you wouldn’t stand back to back and ignore the other person, staring off into the distance, or start working on something else. That would be odd, and even rude. It’s all about paying attention, valuing and respecting your time, and your colleagues’ time.

So, next time you join an online meeting, join with video. Give it a try!

Managing Microsoft Teams in your Office 365 environment

Quadrotech’s advanced Office 365 management tool Nova, gives you deeper insight into your Microsoft Teams usage and activity in your Office 365 environment. To find out more, check out our solutions page here.

We recently hosted a webinar titled, ‘How to Rapidly Enable Working from Home: 5 Practical Tips To Maximize Microsoft Teams’. You can access the recording here