Skype Etiquette 101

HomeSick.Hankins.03Whether you’re catching up with family back at home, maintaining long distance relationships or even interviewing for your first job, it seems Skype is your new best friend.

Just last year, 700 million minutes of free Skype-to-Skype calls took place every day. And what’s more, Skype has now entered the job application process. A market research firm, the Aberdeen Group, found that 42 percent of companies used video interviews to recruit in 2011. Today, the numbers are even higher.

With that said, there’s never been a better time to brush up on your Skype etiquette – keep reading!

The Basics:

Avoid using your phone

…or surfing the web or answering emails. Not only is it obvious you are doing so, but it is also inconsiderate to the person you are speaking to. Don’t think they can’t hear you typing.

Skypers – alert your Skypees 

If other people will be present during the call, give your Skypee a heads up. Unexpected friends nearby may come as a surprise if someone was planning on having a heartfelt conversation with you.

Watch where you’re watching

It’s important to look at the screen to show you’re paying attention, but make sure you’re looking at the right place. It’s natural to look at your screen where you can see the person you’re talking to, but this comes across as not looking the person in the eye. Although it may take some training, look into your webcam for proper eye contact.


In a Professional Setting:

Background matters 

Especially for an interview, you want everything to be flawless. Take down any distracting or inappropriate posters, and find a spot that’s well-lit. Also avoid wearing a white shirt against a white wall – you may look like a floating head.

Is your username appropriate?

If not, change it! The same goes for your Skype profile picture and any other account info.

Location, Location, Location

This is crucial. Barking dogs, alarms, clocks and unexpected phones ringing are all things you want to avoid. Even if you pick a quiet place, there’s no telling what will happen, so take extra precaution for an interview.

When in doubt, pretend

If you’re unsure of how to conduct yourself during a Skype interview, pretend you are sitting directly across from your interviewer. An interview is an interview, whether it’s through Skype or not.

Best of luck and Happy Skyping!

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