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Do You Need a Professional Background When You Work From Home?



If you have moved to remote work over the last few years, you likely have created an office space and learned new software, particularly Zoom or other videoconferencing applications. Working from home is convenient and allows you to work in a relaxing area. However, it is still essential to maintain your professionalism, including choosing or creating a professional background for your video calls.


Importance of Professionalism When Remote


Many business owners and managers may fear that their remote employees are less productive and become distracted when they should be on the clock. They may wonder if you focus on work when you should. These thoughts make them uncertain about maintaining a remote team. Therefore, you need to be even more professional than, in some cases, and at least as professional as you were in the office.


Your professionalism shows your dedication to the company and your job. It encourages people to rely on you. It also reveals that you have a strong work ethic and that no matter your location, you will do your job and do it well. Your professionalism also signals to those in your home that you are at work and that they should keep distractions to a minimum.


Professionalism Beyond Your Virtual Background


While you can choose a professional Zoom background to make your calls look like you are in an office or promoting your brand, you need to do more than choose a great background. These are some essential tips:


  • Dress professionally, even when the camera doesn’t see you.

  • Focus during meetings by asking questions and reiterating information.

  • Work in a dedicated workspace.

  • Be proactive, show initiative, and anticipate others' needs.

  • Respect others’ time and work.


You should also stay connected to the organization. Participate in company events, even virtual ones. Keep in contact with the other staff members and collaborate to solve problems. Stay part of the company.


Also, consider pursuing professional development through online courses or books that teach you new skills. Finally, don’t be afraid to ask for feedback.



Find Balance Between Remote Professionalism & Comfort


Whether you or your boss chose to work remotely, you must balance professionalism and comfort. Set boundaries between your work and free time. Avoid doing work when you should be off for the day or weekend, and avoid hobbies and family distractions when you should be at work. Structure your days so that you know what to expect and do next.


Your workspace should be comfortable and set up ergonomically, but enjoy the comfort of your home, such as your couch or deck, during your work breaks.


Virtual Vs. Professional Background


Regarding your video backgrounds, you can choose between two options. You can create a professional background or choose one of many virtual backgrounds for Zoom. Virtual backgrounds look like office environments or show your company logo with other graphics. They make you look like you are in a professional environment and eliminate distractions while protecting your privacy.


Professional backgrounds may include a green screen or sheet of paper, vinyl, or other material with a picture. These also protect your privacy but take up space in your home office. You can also design your office to create a professional background for your calls.


Key Takeaways


When you work from home, you need to maintain your professionalism.


  • Professionalism matters, even if you work at home.

  • Professionalism goes beyond choosing your videoconferencing background.

  • You must balance your work and leisure activities and keep them in their dedicated spaces.

  • Your videoconferencing background can impact others’ perceptions of your professionalism.


Maintaining your professionalism is essential no matter where you work. As you adapt to your remote work environment, find ways to prove your professionalism and contributions to your organization.


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