Meetings Are Annoying

Meetings Are Annoying

Meetings consume a substantial portion of the employee’s work week.  A closer look reveals that a substantial number are unnecessary, unproductive, and deprive employees of irreplaceable time to focus on completing projects.  

According to a Harvard Business Review survey, 65% of senior managers said meetings prevented them from completing their own work and 64% said meetings negatively impacted their deep thinking time.  

The meeting culture directly impacts employees’ happiness and health because they work “off the clock” and the result is simple:  a poor meeting culture equates to reduced productivity and a loss of work/life balance.

If your organization touts time efficiency as a core value but consistently schedules ineffectual meetings, your core values are out of alignment and require a corporate culture tune up.

Ideas to mitigate the problem:

  1. Beforehand, review the expected deliverables and determine whether a meeting is even necessary.  Could the desired outcome(s) be accomplished in a different format? Possibly via email? A brief telephone chat?
  1. Be sure the meeting agenda is concise and specific.  State the start and end time and stick to it.
  1. Invite only those who have a role on impacting the outcome (decision maker, adviser, executer…)
  1. Discussions that come up that are not agenda-related should be deferred to off-line conversations or to future meetings (this avoids “time gulping”).  Record action items and follow up with the appropriate colleagues afterwards.
  1. BONUS:  Give attendees the option to leave once their role/interest has been discussed.

Let us know in the comments how you keep your meetings on track.  In all your doing, make it a great day!

Zoom Fatigue

Zoom Fatigue

Many companies are rethinking their return to office timeline with the recent spikes in Covid-19 cases nationwide and for many employees, that means more zoom meetings and no end in sight to the fatigue that seems to accompany videoconferencing. .

According to, zoom fatigue is attributed to burnout due to the overuse of virtual communication platforms.  Physical symptoms of burnout can include sleeplessness, tense muscles, and pain.  Cognitive issues such as forgetfulness and lack of concentration can also develop.

So why is videoconferencing so taxing?  Virtual meetings require your brain to work harder because in addition to processing what the speaker is saying, you must also give the impression you’re making eye contact.  Additionally, when communicating virtually, a slight verbal delay requires more of your brain power to interpret the speaker’s words.

As we all work through this “new normal,” we’d like to offer possible solutions for those facing endless video conferences. Here are a couple key tips for reducing zoom fatigue:

First, consider which interactions truly require video.  Could the matter be handled with an email or phone call?  Try to balance your meetings with a mix of video conference and teleconference calls.

Second, when creating your schedule, include breaks where possible.  It’s important to give yourself a break from continuously staring at a screen.

Third, remove distractions.  Minimize the image on your screen if you find yourself becoming distracted by your own appearance.  Or, consider asking if it’s okay to turn off your video functionality so that you can better focus on the discussion.

As always, we hope this helps.  Feel free to share your tips for reducing zoom fatigue in the comment section below…and…by all means, make it a great day!