Making Meetings Meaningful
With many of us still working, learning, and catching up on the hottest new Netflix shows from home, our WiFi is stretched to the breaking point. Our video cuts in and out of our everyday quotidian grind, making it difficult to understand our co-workers and creating greater communication challenges. I often pause and think wasn’t this supposed to make connecting with each other easier. Then as haze lifts, I realize I have Zoom fatigue. I mean as I reflect I do it all day long. I zoom, I teams, I google meet, I WebEx, I chime and some weeks there are more.
Zoom fatigue is as real today as it was a year ago. It was one of the most-talked about COVID-adjacent health concerns to arise from the pandemic, and today we’re still struggling with its affects. As people continue to get vaccinated and the light at the end of the COVID tunnel begins to shine, we are all still struggling to power through. However, many companies will not be returning to the office, and we are left with the question: how do workplaces ensure that virtual meetings are purpose-driven?
One of the best things to come out of the push to virtual meetings is that on average, meetings are now shorter. Which is a plus as people are consciously trying to avoid Zoom fatigue, and as a result, 22 percent more meetings are 30 minutes or less, according to Microsoft. It is also easier to be on time, barring any technical difficulties, meaning you spend less time waiting. Scheduling is easier, and though you may freshen up before a meeting, the days of power suits and pearls are a distant memory.
While the benefits and safety of virtual meetings vastly outweigh the cons, check out these ways to improve your meetings:
Email is the new snail mail.
The same pre-pandemic rules still apply. If your meeting could be an email, send a message to your colleagues instead. They will appreciate not having to comb their hair and put on a shirt with buttons for what will end up being a five-minute meeting.
Schedule, schedule, schedule
When in doubt, make an itinerary. Having a set schedule means you will be less likely to get sidetracked by something unimportant, and you will cover everything you needed to talk about, eliminating the need for a second meeting. With an itinerary, your participants will know what to expect as well, and can start to think about any questions they may have ahead of time.
Do Not Disturb
Do Not Disturb is a feature most people have forgotten about over the past few years. If your email or chat service offers this setting take advantage of it. If you know that you have a big proposal due at the end of the week and all you need is two hours to finish it, block off two hours in your calendar and flip the “Do Not Disturb” switch. Your co-workers will see you're not available and will schedule meetings accordingly. Do Not Disturb is a powerful and helpful feature to ensure you’re staying present in the moment. Let your devices help you improve your interactions by keeping the notifications at bay when you’re focused on important things or just need to time to think!
Take a Break
The Texas Medical Center recommends the 20/20/20 rule when staring at your computer screen for an extended period. That means every 20 minutes, look at something that is about 20 feet away, for 20 seconds. It gives your eyes a break and can reduce eye strain, all important aspects of reducing Zoom fatigue and its effects. You’ll feel refreshed and ready for your next Zoom, meaning you’ll be more attentive and productive.
Switch it up
All work and no play makes you a dull employee. Schedule some fun or relaxing meetings into your day, like a virtual yoga or painting class or a fun team building event.
We recognize the challenge of Zoom fatigue and are here to help make your events and session purposeful and useful. Ask your HR rep how Bundle can be added to your suite of benefits or reach out to us for more information.