In the wake of the pandemic-triggered shift to remote work, virtual meetings quickly became the new normal. From team check-ins to brainstorming sessions, the digital world became our go-to hub for collaboration and communication. While this transition has been crucial in maintaining business continuity, there’s an emerging understanding that perhaps, less might be more when it comes to virtual meetings.
Yes, we’re talking about fewer virtual meetings. But why?
The Drawbacks of Excessive Virtual Meetings
- Zoom Fatigue: Constant video meetings can lead to a unique form of burnout known as ‘Zoom fatigue.’ This stems from the energy spent in concentrating on screen-based stimuli, the pressure to be ‘camera-ready,’ and the lack of casual, unstructured interaction that office environments provide.
- Interrupted Productivity: Meetings, especially those not meticulously scheduled, can disrupt the flow of deep, focused work. The time spent preparing for, attending, and winding down from a meeting often exceeds the duration of the meeting itself.
- Reduced Flexibility: One of the key advantages of remote work is flexibility. However, a calendar packed with virtual meetings can limit this flexibility, especially for those in different time zones.
Promoting Fewer Virtual Meetings
The goal isn’t to eliminate virtual meetings entirely – they’re important for collaboration, team cohesion, and quick decision-making. The aim is to create a more mindful, purposeful approach to scheduling them.
- Audit Your Current Meetings: Look at the meetings currently in your schedule. Are they all necessary? Could the purpose of some be achieved via an email or a shared document instead?
- Establish Clear Meeting Policies: Set rules around when meetings should be held, their maximum duration, and who needs to attend. Ensure every meeting has a clear agenda and that pre-meeting preparation is encouraged.
- Foster Asynchronous Collaboration: Encourage the use of collaborative tools and platforms that allow for asynchronous communication. This means people can contribute when it suits them best, reducing the need for real-time meetings.
- Promote a Meeting-Less Day: Consider implementing a ‘no-meeting’ day where team members can focus solely on individual, deep work. This not only boosts productivity but also provides a well-deserved break from screen time.
- Train in Efficient Communication: Encourage concise, clear communication. The more effectively team members can express their ideas, the less time you’ll need to spend in meetings.
By embracing fewer, more intentional virtual meetings, we can combat digital fatigue, boost productivity, and reclaim the flexibility that remote work promises. At Complish, we’re passionate about supporting you in this shift towards a more balanced, effective approach to remote collaboration.
Remember, it’s not about being on camera all the time; it’s about creating meaningful connections and fostering productive workflows in the digital sphere. Here’s to accomplishing more by meeting less!