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Is Your Background Sabotaging Your Command Presence on Zoom?

Why do Zoom Backgrounds Matter?

You Never Get a Second Chance to Make a Good First Impression!

Every time we enter a Zoom (or Microsoft Teams or Meets) meeting, it is like entering a person’s home for the first time. What is the first thing we all do when visiting somebody’s home? We look at how the room is decorated, and we don’t just casually notice.

We critically JUDGE and assign values to the style of furniture, the layout of the room, coordination of color scheme, pictures on the wall, lighting fixtures, professional or non-professional ambiance, status, and wealth. Then, we assign these values to that individual in terms of competence, intelligence, wealth, and professional level, before they have even said a single word.

According to neuroscience, this all happens within the first 7 seconds.

Simply put, we are all NOSEY and JUDGEMENTAL

First Impressions Matter

Neurologically, this is called the power of recency. First impressions are remembered longer and are given greater weight than subsequent impressions. Your background is the first non-verbal statement you have chosen to frame who you are and what you stand for. Your background does not change for the duration of your Zoom call. 

Backgrounds are either an enhancement or detraction for the person in front of the attorney or the neutral. You have long realized how important it is, when you are communicating in person, to have a “command presence,” i.e., you “own the room.” Your sheer physical stature and the physical aspects of the conference room, wood-paneled walls, the conference table, and executive chairs all frame the professionalism and seriousness of the conversation.  

In the virtual world, all participants have no physical presence, and everyone is the same size on the screen. The net result is an exponential increase in the importance of your background’s power to frame your professionalism and exhibit your Command Presence. 

Either you own and control what your background says about you, or your background will frame you so poorly that it is sabotage.  

7 Types of Backgrounds – Which One Is Best? 

The purpose of your background is to either hide the room and maintain your privacy or to help you promote your brand and establish trust.

  1. Home Office in front of a bookcase full of impressive novels or your kitchen with a cake on the counter. Admit it; people are nosy and judgmental and can’t help themselves. They will spend more time looking at your home than listening to you.
  2. A Green Screen: The purpose of a green screen is to allow you the flexibility to utilize any digital background you like, yet turn your head, and you will lose half of your face.
  3. A White Wall: Back up to a white wall, and you look like a hostage.
  4. Bright Window Behind You: With a light source behind you, it is impossible to see your face. You look like you are part of the witness protection program.
  5. Bright, Elaborate Artwork or sculpture – When your background is overwhelming, everyone focuses on the complicated background instead of the discussions at hand.
  6. Virtual Background: Your meeting is supposed to start in just a few minutes, and you are experiencing technical difficulties. The awkward glow around your head can be very distracting. Have you noticed that you blended into the background? It’s a pervasive problem with Zoom backgrounds. In a recent discussion with a Gerrel 1 Button customer, she referred to herself as looking like a ‘disembodied ghost’ when utilizing her virtual background. 
  7. Gerrel 1 Button: Physical Background – The only authentic and credible option. If you have seen the error message ‘Your Computer doesn’t meet the minimum requirements to use this feature without a green screen background,’ you understand why the Gerrel 1 Button comes with a physical background. Visit our portfolio showing just a sample of our unlimited physical background images.

Have I changed how you feel about your current background? Are you considering using the Gerrel 1 Button?

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