Videoconferencing platforms like Zoom are the next-gen version of conference rooms and watercoolers, conveniently located on your screen at home. But Zoom fatigue is a real thing—especially for those of us who now are working remotely. Avoid it by following these tips:
What to do:
Make sure every invite has an attached agenda, detailing what decisions will be made, says Darren Murph, head of remote at tech company GitLab.
Make a better connection
In small meetings, move the Zoom window so that the video of the person speaking is directly beneath your camera instead of at the bottom or to the side. It’ll convey the feeling of making eye contact, says Lynne Oldham, chief people officer at Zoom.
Hold Zoom-free days
Even Zoom employees do, on Wednesdays. “It gives you a day for focused work,” Oldham says.
Darken your surroundings
If you’re bothered by the reflection of your screen or ring light in your glasses, try using a solid black background behind you or turning your monitor wallpaper black. “It creates less glare,” says Oldham.
What to avoid:
Don’t hold meetings when you could just send an email
Consider asynchronous forms of communication first, says Job van der Voort, cofounder and CEO of HR software provider Remote.com. Make sure everyone feels empowered to say “No, let’s do this ‘async’ instead,” he says.
Don’t fear background noise
Barking dogs and blaring leaf blowers shouldn’t derail your meetings. Instead of toggling back and forth off mute, turn on Zoom’s noise-cancellation feature that mutes background distractions.
Don’t double up
On-site employees should never share a camera during a Zoom meeting, particularly in a conference room. Adopt a virtual-first policy, with each employee using their own equipment so that no one feels left out of any potential side meetings that might be taking place.