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  • Heather Nyberg

Find the 'hang up" button.

Part of starting a virtual assistance business involves a lot of learning, a lot of mistakes and some technical snafus once in a while.


While I haven't had any dire consequences yet from this learning curve (although deleting my entire October time tracking set me back a few hours last week), I did have one rather.....embarrassing incident.


While on a zoom call to meet the team of a new client...I could sense it was time for my involvement to come to an end. I started panicking slightly as I realized I couldn't see an obvious way to sign out. I stalled a bit by summing up my understanding of our conversation...and then, "it was so nice to meet all of you.....again, so nice to meet all of you....what a beautiful day...." The panic started getting worse. Finally I had no choice but to say goodbye.

I froze.

Desperate -- I shoved my thumb up against that little red dot at the top of my monitor.  I saw my skin coloured finger take hold of my spot in the group chat and cringed in horror. %&*$*% that didn't work. My next strategy was to let go of my thumb, but duck out of the range of the camera. I plunged downward towards the bottom of my desk and frantically searched for the "end conversation" button. Instead, I saw the curve of my back peeking into the group conversation, derriere included.

Slowly dying...

I don't know what happened next but mercifully I think somebody took pity on me and the video chat came to an end. But I couldn't get the image of me hiding under my desk (noticeably on camera) out of my head for days afters. It was a mixture of a big cringe, followed by tear streaming laughter, followed by humiliation. Sigh.

This experience has taught me this: tape a little business card to your camera on the monitor to hide your embarrassing hi-jinks during online team meetings. Better yet, research that annoying little 'hang up' button in advance of your call.  Just don't duck and hide -- believe me,

Do not hide under your desk.

the image will not be erased from your mind easily.

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