Employers have had to adapt, working harder to communicate wellness opportunities, benefits information, and providing what employees need most right now.
With the rapid change to remote and flexed work environments, businesses have turned to technology to resolve communication gaps. Since some employees are no longer meeting in person, they’re becoming Zoom experts.
A new phenomenon is emerging with video conferencing like Zoom, Google Meet or Microsoft Teams termed as Zoom fatigue. Employers now have the challenge of helping employees recognize and combat zoom fatigue to optimize productivity.
Recognize Zoom Fatigue
Online meetings are more tiring than face-to-face meetings for multiple reasons. Employees must make more of an emotional effort to appear interested and engaged. The focus on online eye contact puts individuals on high alert and is exhausting. Here are some telltale signs to recognize Zoom fatigue.
Symptoms of Zoom Fatigue
Zoom fatigue symptoms include:
- Headaches or migraines
- Eyestrain or sore eyes
- Low productivity
- Lack of concentration or focus
Employees experience emotional exhaustion and have reduced motivation. The fatigue goes beyond the pandemic and Zoom to include visual and social fatigue. Some may even experience a feeling of “tech invasion.” Assisting employees to recognize that these symptoms stem from too much time spent in online meetings is important and will affect both their work and personal lives.
Without the use of non-verbal cues during a video conference, employees may experience cognitive overload. When too much thought is put into a task, because we can only see individuals’ faces, expressions are exaggerated and employees must work harder to understand the body language of co-workers.
When we stare at the screen in a meeting, we work harder to maintain eye contact. Additionally, the psychological stress of staring at ourselves all day long has negative consequences for our mental health.
Addressing Zoom fatigue in the workplace to prevent depression-like symptoms and can cause employee burnout is a must. Cornerstone Insurance Group can assist with educating your employees on recognizing Zoom fatigue and introduce ways to combat it.
Combat Zoom Fatigue
Zoom meetings are necessary for teams to collaborate in today’s workplace environment, but employers can encourage employees to take certain steps to avoid spending all day on a video call to prevent Zoom fatigue.
Turn off Self-View
It is not always possible, but when it is, encourage employees to turn off their cameras. Without the video component, employees do not have the expectation of forcing a continual smile or keeping constant eye contact. Additionally, this diminishes the heightened emphasis on facial cues which contributes to intense personal emotional reactions.
Encourage employees to stop multitasking and dedicate all of their attention to the video call and conversation, then they are not caught off guard causing increased and unnecessary stress. Zoom calls can already be mentally overwhelming without adding additional side tasks or distractions.
Follow an Agenda
Meetings with shared agendas are more efficient and more likely to end on time, giving employees eyes a rest from constant screen time. Zoom meetings should be scheduled and not impromptu when possible, so an agenda with clear objectives will necessitate the interaction.
Instead of hosting a Zoom meeting for a quick question, instill collaboration through alternative methods of communication and clear policies to prevent Zoom fatigue.
Use Collaborative Notes
A shared document or non-video collaboration can help prevent Zoom fatigue from setting in, by helping reduce the level of intensity employees from spending too long staring into others’ eyes and being on video conference high alert.
Collaborative notes, like with Google Documents or a messaging application like Slack, allow employees to work together and provide feedback to each other without the constant video interaction.
If you’re struggling to come up with a solution that works for your workplace, Cornerstone Insurance’s human resources specialists can help you establish and implement policies to assist your team.
Focus on Employee Wellness
Employers need to make sure they have the appropriate policies in place to support the physical and mental well-being of all employees. Cornerstone Insurance Group can guide you in encouraging your employees to make small changes to combat Zoom fatigue.
With our help, you can train your employees on ways to stop fighting Zoom fatigue and develop safe practices that lead to better communication and more productivity. Cornerstone Insurance Group focuses on improving the wellness of each and every employee in all types of work environments. Let us help you create a custom plan catered to your team and your work environment.
Cornerstone Insurance Group can help you help your employees combat zoom and pandemic fatigue to create happy, healthy and productive teams. Contact us today.
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