We’ve all been staying connected virtually, replacing our normal human interactions with webinars, video conferencing and virtual events. You probably feel exhausted and overwhelmed, and as it turns out, it’s a problem many people are facing as they try to navigate video platforms for both their private and professional lives. BBC Worklife spoke to some experts and discovered that video chats and meetings have lots of scientific and psychological reasons for seeming so draining and sometimes counter-productive.
It got us thinking about the push to move meetings, trainings and events to virtual platforms. If attendees feel exhausted instead of invigorated when the virtual event is over, we’re not fulfilling the purpose of meeting.
Here are 5 Ways to Combat the Virtual Meeting Hangover:
1. Include different types of learning.
Combine video of the presenter with animations, custom slides or graphics that help drive your point home. The same rules of dynamic presentations apply, even though you’re presenting virtually and not face-to-face.
2. Curate your content.
While we’re striving to stay connected, avoid the temptation to put everything online. Share your unique perspectives and spend time to make them impactful and meaningful.
3. Try a different format.
Consider a presentation that includes multiple presenters or an interview session where you can dig further into the content or topic by speaking to an expert or moderating a panel. A roundtable discussion is another great way to bring more voices into the conversation.
4. Use tools to make it interactive.
Allow things like polls, Q&A, hand raising and breakout sessions. If you’re taking your entire event virtual, work in the same types of breaks you’d have on site. Allow for quick breaks as well as breaks for movement (think yoga, Zumba, etc.) and networking.
5. Phone a friend.
With so many virtual meetings, events and conferences happening, it’s OK to not have all of the answers. Call your production partner for consultation on live streaming, best practices, keeping attendees engaged, equipment and planning support, full-service outsourcing and partnership, or creative and scenic support.