After a full day packed with virtual meetings, it’s not uncommon to feel like you’ve pulled an all-nighter. In fact, virtual meeting fatigue is a very real thing – as remote and hybrid workers know all too well. Virtual meetings make it hard to pick up on social cues, like turn-taking and sentiment. It also makes spontaneous collaboration difficult to achieve, as actions like muting and unmuting hinder the conversational flow. Add in the hyper-awareness that comes from seeing your own face staring back at you, and it’s no wonder we’re exhausted, even after a brief virtual meeting.
Luckily, there are steps you can take to combat these issues. Here’s how to minimize virtual meeting fatigue so that you can continue to bring your best self to the boardroom table.
How to Deal with Virtual Meeting Fatigue
If you’re feeling tired after a virtual meeting or trying to avoid them altogether, you’re probably experiencing virtual meeting fatigue. Try these steps to make life easier:
- Skip the video. Not every call needs a video attached. Have everyone dial in via their phones, or give everyone permission to turn off their video (or even audio) on a call. You’ll spend less time worrying about what you look like and more time focusing on the actual tasks at hand.
- Don’t schedule back-to-back virtual meetings. Give yourself a break between meetings. If possible, abide by the “this could have been an email” ethos, and limit the number of meetings you take each day.
- Explore other synchronous communication options. Meetings are great for quickly clarifying things or making decisions, but sometimes messaging software like Slack or Discord can achieve the same goals without the risk of virtual meeting fatigue.
- Keep it brief. The shorter the meeting, the less likely it is to lead to fatigue. Create a meeting agenda, note who will be speaking, and stick to your schedule. Give people permission to leave the call when they are no longer needed.
- Troubleshoot your tech. Tech issues like delays in logging on, sharing materials, or dealing with audio and visual issues are sources of virtual meeting fatigue. Troubleshoot your tech beforehand to ensure that everyone has the equipment they need to fully participate.
Have Your Meetings IRL at District Offices
The biggest antidote to virtual meeting fatigue? Meeting in person. In a world of hybrid and remote work, catching up in person is a big deal – and sometimes a welcomed change of pace.
If your team is showing signs of virtual meeting fatigue, consider booking a tech-equipped meeting room for those who can meet up in person, with others logging in as needed. At District Offices, we have a variety of beautifully appointed, flexible meeting spaces designed to accommodate groups of all sizes. You can book on an as-needed basis or have a scheduled calendar “spot” for your team to meet up regularly.