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Tonic for Zoom Fatigue: Shorter Meetings—and a Day Without Them

By October 8, 2020 No Comments

NeuGroup Members discussed their approaches to making WFH situations more palatable.

“Six hours on Zoom is like 10 hours in the office,” one treasurer of a mega-cap company said during a recent NeuGroup meeting (yes, a Zoom meeting), quantifying a feeling about the side effects of virtual meetings. Almost everyone who has been working from home for seven months knows what she means.

  • At the same meeting, another treasurer said he is encouraging his team “not to book 30-minute calls, to make them 25 minutes instead. If you can, put headphones in, do one-on-ones while walking.”

Shaving time. At another meeting, of FX risk managers, members compared notes on how their companies are trying to fight virtual meeting fatigue.

  • One member kicked off the conversation, saying, “One of the things I implemented is if I’m scheduling a meeting for longer than 30 minutes, I only schedule them for 45 to 50 minutes to give people time to get up between meetings.”
    • Many other members have similar policies. “We start meetings 5 or 10 minutes after the hour or half-hour to allow for breaks and parents to help their children log into class,” one member said.
    • Another responded that “some people are going to be late anyway, why fight it?”
    • “We also implemented 25- and 50-minute internal meetings,” a third member commented.

Meeting moratoriums. In addition to shorter meetings, one member told the group, “We also have no meeting Fridays. It has been nice.” Another said his company has a no meeting Wednesday rule.

  • No surprise, the idea of a day without meetings struck a chord with peers who don’t currently have them. One said, “The no meetings on Fridays must be so nice.” Another said she “will have to implement” the policy at her company.
  • But one member, speaking on a Thursday, had a warning: His company has a no-Friday meeting rule “but somehow I have seven meetings tomorrow.”
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Justin Jones

Author Justin Jones

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