Assess Your Zoom Room

While there are funny Twitter accounts and parody Tik Tok’s about what’s happening in the background of your Zoom room, today I’m sharing my checklist from The No-Panic Plan for Virtual Presenters.

“Zoom room” rhymes, so that’s my preference for the title; however, these set-up tips apply to Skype, Teams, WebEx, and other virtual meeting platforms your organization may use. 

Last week I worked with five clients to adjust their backdrops for upcoming virtual meetings and conferences. Below are some of the adaptations we made on the spot.

Assess your Zoom room for these elements:


Height of Camera

Set your camera slightly above eye level for the most flattering and professional view. So many presenters ignore this—and we end up with the up-your-nose view.

Depth of background

While presenters tend to back up to a bookcase or a wall, this results in a mug shot. Follow the advice to set up in a corner if possible to provide some dimension. Maybe even shift your camera 45 degrees so we can see some depth of background.


Don’t set up with your back to a window. The view outside may be lovely, but we can’t see your face. It’s too dark. Also, avoid presenting directly underneath overhead lighting. This casts dark shadows (translation: it makes you look old and tired). A lamp to the side is better.

Good mix of books, art, and objects in the background


Bonus points for a whiteboard


Non-negotiable: You must have a plant!

Yes, move some greenery into the picture to add some life to your surroundings.



To customize a keynote or professional development session that will have your audience laughing and learning, contact Mandi Stanley.

Certified Speaking Professional Mandi Stanley works with business leaders who want to boost their professional image by becoming better speakers and writers through interactive high-content keynotes, breakout sessions, workshops, technical writing seminars, and fun proofreading classes. 

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