The Customer Experience Podcast
The Customer Experience Podcast

Episode · 2 years ago

82. 3 Ways to Fight Zoom Fatigue w/ Ethan Beute

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Video meetings are more than likely here to stay.  They’re exhausting, though — way beyond mere eyestrain. If more of us are going to work remotely, we need to implement these 3 ways to overcome “Zoom fatigue.”

 

I’m Ethan Beute, Chief Evangelist at BombBomb, host of The Customer Experience Podcast, and co-host of the CX Series on the B2B Growth Show, here today to share actionable ways to improve your video meetings.

 

In this episode, you’ll learn how to…

 

- Schedule a 25 minute meeting to give yourself a built-in break

 

- Quit multitasking during meetings & get permission to look out the window

 

- Record a video message rather than having a video meeting

 

- Free your time & attention from so many video meetings

 

Check out these resources I mentioned during the podcast:

 

- My book teaches you how to Rehumanize Your Business with video

 

- Watch me talk about Zoom Fatigue on the news

 

- Learn 6 steps toward better meetings

 

Subscribe, listen, and rate/review the Customer Experience Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Play or Google Podcasts, and find more episodes on our blog.

We will continue to see opportunities to lean into video conferencing and video messaging to stay facetoface with the people who matter most to our success. The single most important thing you can do today is to create and deliver a better experience for your customers. Learn how sales, marketing and customer success experts create internal alignment, achieved desired outcomes and exceed customer expectations in a personal and human way. This is the customer experience podcast. Here's your host, Ethan Butte. Thank you so much for giving a play to this episode of the Customer Experience Podcast and the CX series on BTB growth. My name is Ethan Butte. I am your host. I'm also chief evangelist at bombomb and Co author of the Book Rehumanize Your Business, and once a month I do a solo episode of the show where I share something I've been thinking about or working on recently,...

...and I recently enjoyed the opportunity to have a live appearance on the morning news on the Fox station in Denver, Colorado. Now, the topic was zoom fatigue or video conferencing fatigue, and you know that when the local broadcast news wants to talk about something it is truly broken through to the mainstream. So I know that you are doing video calls and I know that this affects you, I know what affects your customers and I know what affects employees. So it's highly relevant in a customer experience conversation. Again, the customer experience involves every single touch point along the entire customer journey and a great employee experience is a necessary precursor to a great customer experience. So the more we can all fight the fatigue, the better off we are with our customer experience. No matter your level of familiarity or exposure to video calling, video conferencing, zoom...

...calling, whatever you want to call it, I'm certain I've got a couple tips that are going to be useful to you and to the folks that you're connecting and communicating with through video calls, and this will continue to be helpful and relevant. We are not going to be doing less video calling and less video messaging, even as local economies open up, even as some employees go back to the office, this is going to continue to be a valuable way and an increasingly common way for us to be facetoface with people when we cannot physically be there in person. And of course this is not brand specific. We call it zoom fatigue because zoom is the dominant player in the space. It's an awesome platform. We use it at bombomb we have four years. We use it internally for employee meetings and we use it externally, of course, with all of our customers. What we'll do here over the next several minutes is define zoom fatigue and talk about a couple reasons why it happens and...

...then offer three specific categories of solutions with a few different ideas and opportunities within each of those three categories. And last note here before we get started. If you want to see that live appearance on the Fox station in Denver, just visit bombombcom podcast. That's bomb bombcom forward slash podcast. There we do short write ups for every single episode. We include the fully embedded audio and we embed video clips as well. Will only have one video clip in this post and it'll be that live appearance. So what is zoom fatigue? Essentially it's brain drain, it's mental exhaustion, it's that feeling we have at the end of the day where we maybe had four or five or six meetings, all done by video conferencing, and we're a bit more worn than normal. We're all doing a lot of these calls, personally and professionally. Sometimes we're doing them after work with family members and friends, and it takes a lot...

...of energy and there are a few reasons why we feel this exhaustion at the end of a long video call day. The first one is pretty obvious. It's I strain. It's just more screen time. We're spending a lot more time looking at our screens. In addition, we're aware that we're being watched. We're on stage, we're on air and we can see ourselves. That awareness is something that most people pay some level of attention to, and that level of attention can cause additional strain and additional exhaustion. Finally, and this one's interesting, our brains aren't quite fully adapted to this environment. We have to work a little bit harder to read body language, to read emotion and tone and to read all those other rich nonverbal cues that make video so valuable. The answer, of course, isn't to stop doing zoom calls. Instead,...

...there are a few things we can do before the call during the call and instead of the call first up before the call. Switch up your schedule. Most people schedule meetings at square intervals fifteen minutes, thirty minutes, sixty minutes. Instead, schedule a meeting for twenty five minutes instead of thirty or fifty minutes instead of sixty. This gives you that pause in the break that you need between calls in the case that you go back to back, of course. Another idea here is to lock your calendar so that you cannot be scheduled back to back. Of course, not everyone has complete control of their schedule, but by creating a culture of twenty five and fifty minute meetings, you're doing a favor to your fellow team members, to your customers and to other people that you might be meeting with. Also, by creating a little gap in your schedule between calls, you're avoiding that awkward moment that can happen if you're scheduling backtoback calls on the same zoom link, and that's the case...

...where your next meeting drops in on your current call. It's super awkward. It's weird for everybody. No one quite knows what to do and what typically happens is the person on the next meeting bails immediately and you have to reach out and let them know that it's okay to get back on that link. So consider ways to switch up your schedule. Next, during the call, take breaks and relax. Give yourself permission to look away from your screen. Now, if you and I were having coffee or lunch together, we would make a lot of eye contact, but we wouldn't stare each other down. There's no reason to stare at your screen, to stare at yourself or to stare at the camera lens on the call. There are other ways to demonstrate that you're engaged in that you're paying attention. Give yourself permission to look around, give yourself permission to look out the window and, should your name come up or should you be asked to direct question, your response will demonstrate that you are in fact mentally dialed into the meeting and that you are paying attention.

Now, the elephant in the room on this topic, and something I've been guilty of before, is checking your email, checking slack, checking social and doing other things while you're on the call. If you are feeling any form of fatigue at the end of the day. This is the first and best place to look. Take breaks and relax from looking at your screen, close your browser, put your phone down, stop multitasking, pay attention to the meeting. If you have something more important than that meeting or you don't actually belong in that meeting, you should have the courage not to attend the meeting. You should have the courage to uninvite yourself or, if you're not quite sure, you should solicit some input in advance of the meeting. What exactly are we going to be going over? What is the purpose of the meeting and what kind of value do you expect that I will provide to the meeting work? What type of information do you expect that I will need to get from that meeting? Again, stop staring at the screen, stop staring...

...at yourself, stop staring at the camera, give yourself permission to look around and stop multitasking on the call. All of that will reduce screen time and reduce eyestrain. It will be a little bit freeing to your mind and you can actually dial in to the content of the meeting so much more effectively. Final pro tip here. If you find yourself board during the meeting and you need to stay engaged, try taking notes by hand so they're in the during the call. Take a break and relax. Topic I was starting to bleed into the third and final category. Instead of the call, try other approaches. Obviously, the live video call you're on May not need to be a live call at all. In fact, it may not even need to be a meeting. So a few ideas here. Remember that your phone is actually a phone and you can walk and talk. This is great, especially for one on one meetings. If you have some one on one zoom calls coming...

...up and the next week or two, try rescheduling those as phone calls instead and walk and talk the meeting. It's extremely refreshing and it may actually be a better conversation as a consequence. Second, of course, there's still plain old typed out text in emails, text messages, social messages, slack messages, etc. Again, you may not actually need to have a meeting about the topic. If it's just conveying information, send it as a message. If it's not a complicated topic, just send a couple of messages back and forth. You may be able to settle the issue, explore the concept or advanced it's the idea or opportunity with a little bit of back and forth rather than a live, synchronous call. Finally, and related, you can record and send video messages. You record a video when it's convenient for you and then you send it to one person or five people or fifty people, and each person opens it up and experiences you in person when it's convenient for her...

...or him. So it's got all the benefits of facetoface, all that rich nonverbal communication, but it doesn't require scheduling and coordination and all those other things that get us live on a video call. At the same time, there's no back and forth on getting the right day in time. There's no need to be live in the moment and respond immediately. This gives people a chance to experience the message and respond accordingly and respond on their own time. That's what we've been working on for a decade at bombomb. I've sent more than tenzero videos myself in emails and text messages, in slack messages, in Linkedin messages, Tenzero of them, and I know bombomb customers and bombm employees who sent even more. and I coauthored with my friend and teammates Steve Passinelli, the book on why and how to do this. It's called Rehumanize Your Business. How personal videos accelerate sales and improve customer experience. These video messages can...

...be used across the entire customer life cycle and across the entire employee life cycle, and, of course, they can be used to connect and communicate with people in your personal and professional networks as well. Anytime you click send is an opportunity to add a video, to bring the message to life, to communicate more clearly, to build some human connection and ultimately, to increase conversion, to get more yeses. Now the pandemic has reminded us of the value and importance of human connection and getting facetoface in person, in video conferences and in video messages. I'm not sure what's going on at your company, but seventy seven percent of bombomb employees reported that they love working from home. On a four point scale, the top one was I love working from home. More than three out of four people said they loved it, and only four percent of people gave one of the too bottom responses. So the next great...

...majority there was the it's okay for now. Point being, we will continue to see opportunities to lean into video conferencing and video messaging to stay facetoface with the people who matter most to our success. If you have your own ideas and your own experiences things that I missed that can help with soon fatigue, reach out again. My name is Ethan Butte. My last name is spelled bee ute. Reach out and connect on linkedin or send me an email directly, Ethan etajn at Bombombcom. Thanks so much for listening. I hope you picked up a couple of ideas. For more episodes of the PODCAST, check out Bombombcomlas podcast. For rehumanize Your Business, visit Bombombcom Book. Again, my name is Ethan Butte and I thank you so much for listening. Have a great day. Clear Communication, human connection, higher conversion. These are just some of the benefits of adding video to the messages you're sending every day.

It's easy to do with just a little guidance, so pick up the official book rehumanize Your Business. How personal videos accelerate sales and improve customer experience. Learn more in order today at Bombombcom Book. That's bomb bombcom book. Thanks for listening to the customer experience podcast. Remember the single most important thing you can do today is to create and deliver a better experience for your customers. Continue Learning the latest strategies and tactics by subscribing right now in your favorite podcast player, or visit Bombombcom podcast.

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