Due to pandemic conditions while more people are working remotely, most meetings and virtual training sessions are occurring via Zoom or other platforms such as MS Teams, Webex, etc. It’s no secret that Zoom Fatigue is happening and impacting employee productivity and morale. Just today, a client said that when it comes to virtual meetings, there are two camps of people: people who engage and those who do not unless they are called upon or need to speak. On the positive side, online tools have provided mechanisms and systems to communicate and keep in touch. With that said, too much of a good thing can flip to the negative side of the equation if you’re not paying attention to it.
Take this quick self-assessment to determine if you or your employees suffer from Zoom Fatigue. For each statement, select Agree or Disagree. Your response represents an overall sentiment and view of the situation.
|1. I spend at least 4 to 6 hours in Zoom meetings or Virtual Learning Sessions per week.|
|2. I find Zoom meetings / training sessions boring and consist of talking heads.|
|3. I tend to multi-task while on a Zoom meeting.|
|4. I prefer to attend live vs. virtual training.|
|5. I tend to listen and Zone Out more than I speak.|
|6. I am comfortable being on camera.|
What do your responses tell you?
1. If your spending more than 6 hours a week on Zoom or other platforms, ask yourself:
- How effectives are these meetings / virtual training sessions to begin with?
- Are they managed well?
- Do they have start and stop times?
- Is there an agenda?
- Do action items that come out of the meetings?
- Are you engaged in the learning online as much as you are in person?
- Are the training sessions engaging and interesting?
2. If you find online meetings or virtual training sessions boring, ask yourself:
- Do you keep the meeting and/or training session at a manageable time frame? g., less than 45 minutes for meetings and less then 90 minutes for training?
- Do you provide breaks?
- Do you have interaction and activities built in?
3. If you tend to multi-task while on Zoom, ask yourself:
- What’s more important than what’s being talked about / presented?
- Are you interested in the topic to begin with?
- Are you required to attend or is this optional?
- Do you have a stake in the meeting?
- Are you required to participate?
4. If you prefer to attend live sessions vs. virtual training, ask yourself?
- What do I want to get out of this training session?
- If this important for my job and/or my career?
- Are you engaged in the training or a bystander?
5. If you tend to listen more than you speak, ask yourself:
- Are you interested in this topic?
- Do you want your voice to be heard?
- Are you comfortable speaking up in virtual meetings or sessions?
- Do you participate in activities if there are some?
6. If you have a tendency to avoid the camera, ask yourself?
- Do you have a space that is conducive to being on camera in the first place?
Based on your responses, keep in mind the following Zoom Tips to create, deliver and facilitate engaging sessions that make a difference and matter to those who attend.
Zoom Tips: Leading Meetings / Virtual Learning Sessions
- Make sure the platform works and test it out ahead of time
- Focus on the NEED to KNOW vs. NICE to KNOW
- Make sure the meeting or virtual learning is absolutely necessary
- Use Slides with Few Words and more pictures
- Use the tools to engage participants
- Video clips (e.g., from You Tube)
- Include Breaks (short or long, depending on the length of the overall session
- For meetings – 60 minutes or less
- For virtual learning – 90 minutes or less per session. If you have longer training sessions, break them into smaller increments.
- Encourage participants to use video, at least for some of the time so that you can see each other
- Set Ground Rules for participation
- Have Fun! and allow time to get to know one another on a personal level
- Incorporate activities for both meetings and virtual learning
- Leave with action items and assignments
- Finish with takeaways
- Follow-up, Follow-up, Follow-up
Zoom Tips: Attending Meetings / Virtual Learning Sessions
- Make a commitment to participate
- Use the chat to ask questions
- Turn the Video On.
- Take notes.
- Remove distractions (if you can)
- Use mute function when listening to speaker
- Check your computer ahead of time to make sure everything is set up and you’re able to connect to the site
- If you need to use your phone, make sure that works as well
- Let people know you’re in a meeting or training session
- Don’t multi-task with answering phones, checking for email, etc.
A meeting or Virtual Training Needs To Be Interactive and Engaging
The name of the current Meeting and Virtual Learning game is to keep the participant engaged, action items are identified and the information is useful and applicable. This comes with reinforcement, coaching and ongoing learning opportunities, both formal and informal.