How to deal with video conference fatigue

If you’re working at home, you’ve likely been on your fair share of video conference calls. At first, seeing your coworkers’ faces after a long time in quarantine may have been a welcome sight, but after a few months of sitting through a bunch of meetings, a lot of people are feeling video conference fatigue. 

The reason for fatigue is that meeting over video is just not quite the same as meeting face to face. Our brains have to work harder to pick up on non-verbal cues, and since most attendees have their microphones turned off to decrease background noise, it can feel like you’re speaking into a void. You also see yourself staring back at you, which can make you more self-aware than you are in person. 

Video conference fatigue is a more recent phenomenon, when suddenly everyone was sequestered at home and video became the lifeline to the outside world. 

Office workers, teachers, and students likely feel video conference fatigue more than most, since they’re used to going to meetings or attending classes in person. While it might seem like people in these fields will always have to meet through video, they do have options. Read on to learn how to use the video tool, Prezi Video, to reduce the number of meetings on your calendar, and still be able to maintain a connection with your colleagues and students while working remotely.

Asynchronous meetings

You’re likely doing some type of asynchronous communication already, which occurs when you provide information that doesn’t require an immediate response, like email or texts. Using asynchronous communication is one of the best ways to cut down on meetings, but it typically relies on a lot of writing to function. With Prezi Video, you can record your thoughts in a video and share the file with your team.

Prezi’s product marketing management and product management teams give project status updates in a weekly asynchronous meeting. This was a great way for the two teams to stay connected and see each other while avoiding another video call. They’re able to watch the videos on their own time and provide feedback and questions via email later.

Prezi Video is the perfect tool for an asynchronous meeting. It’s easy to record and share your thoughts, and you can also add a visual element next to you on screen. One of the things that makes video conferencing so tiring for some people is the feeling of all eyes on them while they’re speaking. With Prezi Video, not only can you record the video ahead of time, but you also give your audience something else to look at while you’re on screen.

Watch the product management update from Ben Holm here, and learn more about his and the product marketing team’s asynchronous meeting here.



Instructions

Grab their attention by making your presentation more interactive

A good way for teachers to reduce the number of video meetings with their students is to provide instruction through recorded videos. Usually, when teachers provide instruction or are explaining an assignment, it is just them addressing the class and doesn’t require much back and forth with students.

In the video below, watch teacher Gabrielle Creagh explain a new assignment to her class. She goes through each step of the assignment and highlights important points next to her on-screen. Her personality shines through in this video, making it a great way for her students to see and connect with her without having to all be online at the same time.



Short, teacher-made videos with instruction are one of the main features of flipped classrooms. If you’re interested in learning more about implementing a flipped classroom, check out our Flipped Classroom 101 series.

Announcements

If you want to make an announcement, there’s really no need to gather all your colleagues or your students into a video conference. Instead, record a video and send it to everyone who needs it. This is a great option if you just want to give a quick update and don’t want to disturb anyone’s flow for a short meeting. 

When his school went remote in the spring, Mike Ruehle, a school principal in California, recorded daily morning announcements and sent them to students and their families. Below you can watch the welcome video he made for the first day of school this year:



It’s safe to say that while many people are staying at home, there are going to be a lot of meetings that take place on video. But that doesn’t mean that video conference fatigue has to be the norm. Try replacing one of your meetings by recording a Prezi video ahead of time and sending it to your would-be meeting attendees.

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