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  • Writer's pictureTom Wyant

"Zoom Fatigue" is a thing. I am not kidding.

Do you know that feeling when you've spent too much time in virtual meetings and would rather have real face-to-face interaction? Well, that's what we call "Zoom fatigue."

Believe it or not, there's actual scientific proof behind this feeling. Researchers from Austrian universities recently looked into how video conferencing affects our bodies and minds. They had people wear monitors that track brain and heart activity while they used platforms like Zoom and Microsoft Teams.

What they discovered was quite interesting. The brain waves measured by EEG showed that online meetings made people use higher-level brain frequencies related to focus, attention, and stress compared to in-person meetings. So, it's not just in your head – those video calls demand more mental effort to stay on track.

The study also found changes in heart rate, showing that fatigue sets in during online meetings and sticks around.

Before you decide to ditch video meetings altogether, it's important to remember that the study focused on university students in a campus setting, not office workers in the comfort of their homes. So, there might be some differences based on age and environment.

However, the main takeaway here is that talking face-to-face in person versus through a screen can significantly impact our bodies. So, even if you're not a college student, video conferencing fatigue is real.

Now, if businesses want to enjoy the benefits of video conferencing without exhausting their employees, here are some ideas:

  1. Use collaboration tools like Teams, Slack, or email to reduce the need for real-time video meetings. This gives your team the flexibility to respond when it suits them.

  2. Whenever it's safe and possible, schedule in-person meetings. Nothing beats a personal, face-to-face conversation and a break from the virtual world.

  3. Talk to your employees about how they prefer to communicate. Some might like video meetings, while others prefer written updates or phone calls.

  4. Keep video meetings short and allow for breaks between them to prevent burnout.

So, don't toss your webcam just yet. Step back, evaluate your communication, and find the right mix to keep your team engaged and refreshed.

Please contact us if you need help finding the right tech tools for productivity and engagement.



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