I recently bought a green-screen for some upcoming webinars. With a week to go, I set up the screen to have a practice run, only to find myself with a less than flattering green halo! Some research later revealed my lighting was probably to blame.
Over the following evenings my practice set-ups became more elaborate...
It started with the addition of an extension lead and two angle-poise lamps, which were meant to create depth, but only succeeded in creating a granular flashing effect akin to a 1990’s disco!
Next up, I bought a set of plastic clamps to hold the screen in place. These simply pinged off half way through a test run and almost took my eye out!
And Finally, I downloaded a gazillion different backdrop photos that in the real world, I would never have broadcast from: blurred New York office, The Golden Gate bridge, wooden sauna and a meadow!!!
The night before the official webinar test practice, my husband walked in on me knee deep in extension cables, hoisting up the screen (minus the clamps) and muttering something about looking like a relative of the incredible hulk, and asked me a question. ‘WHY are you doing this?” It stopped me dead in my tracks. As I heard my answer leave my lips I realised how silly it sounded. “I want it to look like I’m in a proper office, not our spare room.” (The study / office is currently under construction and off limits for at least a few more months!) “You’ve never worried about what anyone has thought about you before. Besides, if they are they type of people who care more about how something looks, than the knowledge you can offer them, they’re not the right people for you to be doing business with.” And he’s absolutely right.
I am a professional!
I got so wrapped up in ‘trying’ to look professional, somewhere along the way I forgot ‘I AM’ a professional, and a bloody good one at that. I agree that environment is important, and a good first impression can really help engage people more quickly, but this is in a large way down to the host / Trainer / Facilitator etc. Even if you have the most stunning environment at your disposal, it’s not going to be any use to you if you don’t get what you need from attending!
So, for now...
So, for now, if you happen to join me on a webinar and you spot a spare bed in the background, and maybe even the dog, just go with it, my knowledge about helping people kick-start their career in Training & Development is still the same as it would be if I were in a posh study, the empire state building or my spare room!!
Learning doesn't just happen in a training session. It happens all around us! Follow my ramblings and continue to see the world in a different light!