How to say goodbye on Zoom

Joe Martin

We have all been there over the last 6 months. You had a great meeting. You presented all of your material well, you led a great discussion, then you make it to the end. 

How should I close, do I say goodbye, do I wave?

Where is the darn end call button? I can never find that thing. 

If that has ever happened to you then read on. 

To understand how to properly say goodbye on Zoom, lets take a look at the history of saying goodbye. 

Where does Goodbye come from?

Goodbye comes from the root Godbywe or “God be with you”. It first showed up in the 1500’s . It has become a common place to say goodbye to close friends, relatives, business colleagues, even the bus driver you have never met before. 

In various cultures, a goodbye may also include a wave, a handshake, a hug, or a kiss on both cheeks. With the move to more digital and remote teams, and the increase of video conferencing we are stuck without the physical connection. 

Yet the wave lives on. If you feel awkward in the way you say goodbye on Zoom, you aren’t alone. 

3 Steps to the perfect Zoom goodbye

A solid goodbye is a great way to close off a meeting. We all struggle with knowing how to end something, but these tips can help. 

1. Choose the exit that is right for you. 

To find the right exit for you, it may be helpful to see some of the most awkward exits that you may want to avoid in groups you aren’t familiar with. 

  • The “where’s the dang end button” . This is a classic exit. It can come across awkward and unpolished 
  • The “peace out” - this one may have worked in high school or college, but can definitely come across with a more immature exit. 
  • The “Rock On” - were you a drummer in an 80’s tribute band? If so then carry on, if not do your best to avoid this one. 
  • The “Ghoster” - maybe you have a dog barking, a kid screaming, you have to go to the bathroom, or you are just over the meeting. The Ghoster feels like an incomplete exit that should be avoided. 
  • The “Kiss Goodbye” - unless its your Grandma or Mom on the other side of that camera, avoid this one at all costs. 
  • The “Shooter McGain” - Happy Gilmore was a classic front he 90’s, but keep the fictional golfer’s signature move where it belongs. Keep those guns holstered. 
  • The “Broken Goodbye” - mostly unavoidable, but always seems to happen at Goodbye. Make sure your internet connection is strong anytime you do a conference call. 

Now that you know what not to do, look deep inside yourself and discover what exit feels right to you. For many it just may be a simple goodbye or a simple wave. Try out a few on your own and roll with it. You will find that it will quickly become a part of what people expect from you on a video conference call. 

2. Own it

Once you have decided on what you want to do to end calls, own it, make it part of who you are. As humans we like to know what to expect. If you do the same exit everytime on a conference call then chances are high it will feel more normal and authentic. Your audience will also become accustomed to your exit. 

Find the one you love and own it. 

3. Practice makes perfect

Just like for a presentation or a keynote speech, practicing both on calls and even in the mirror in the mornings can be a great way to really nail your exit. 

Remember, eye contact and a clean delivery are key. 

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