As the majority of our meetings continue to be hosted online, the rise of ‘Zoom fatigue’ has become a natural occurrence. In this short video, Martyn Barmby, the Founder of MSB Executive, explains the reasons for ‘Zoom fatigue’ and some tips to avoid it.
We were delighted to run a webinar for the CFA Society yesterday on how to make a great impression at online meetings. With nearly 100 people in attendance, it is clearly a hot topic.
There were some great questions and we thought if might be useful to share a couple for everyone.
If you have any more questions please don’t hesitate to get in touch! Or check out our comprehensive masterclass ‘How To Make A Great Impression At Online Meetings’ which covers all the techniques you will need to make a positive impact!
Is it good to lean forwards towards the screen at online meetings?
There are some who advise leaning forwards throughout online meetings to make a good impression. While we agree there are benefits to leaning into the screen, our advice is to start in a ‘neutral position’. This is where you sit up tall in the centre of your chair and imagine that there is a helium balloon attached to the top of your head pulling your spine and neck long.
Leaning in is useful if you want to show enthusiasm when you are talking. Or if you want to make it clear you would like to say something. However, we would recommend you use this position sparingly. The risk is that it can be misinterpreted as though you are ‘pleading’ in some cases or ‘overbearing’ in others.
What is the best way to take notes during a meeting?
There is nothing worse than hearing ‘thunder typing’ when you are at an online meeting – someone noisily thwacking away at the keyboard. Even if that person is making notes and concentrating on the call, it can be very distracting. So at the very least, mute your screen when you are typing.
The other danger is that people can jump to conclusions that you are not concentrating on the call. Old fashioned pen and paper works well. It is easier for others on the call to see you are taking notes if they can see a pen in your hand.
The key point is to make it clear that you are present on the call and are not working on anything else. Even if that means slipping it into the conversation that you’ve been taking notes!
One of the side effects of having so many online meetings is that we cannot avoid seeing ourselves on screen. Some people find it distracting and others even say it makes them feel anxious.
This short blog is written to assure you that you are not alone. Many actors refuse to watch their performances and go to great lengths to avoid it. Recently Adam Driver walked out of an interview to avoid seeing himself on screen.
This may seem particularly strange for an actor. It feels a bit like a chef refusing to eat their own food!
Whenever we use video in our sessions with clients we always give a health warning. Most of the video we see is on television and film. As the end credits show there is a small army of people ensuring the actors look good (or sometimes bad). This includes a lighting team, sound team and a number of make up artists.
This can mean that even if we are doing a great job at our online meeting it might not look that way. If we judge ourselves by the standards of TV and video then we will always be disappointed.
More tips will follow on this blog to help us look as good as possible but in the meantime, a really good option is to get a desk light like the one we recommended in an earlier blog.
If all else fails, hopefully you can take some comfort from the fact that even the professionals with all their support teams often find it difficult as well.