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Stop Zoning Out in Zoom Meetings

The Ringelmann Effect

The Ringelmann Effect

In 1913, a French architectural engineer discovered that when a group of people pull a rope, they put in less effort, as compared to them pulling the rope alone. This came to be known as the Ringelmann Effect.

The same effect is seen in group activities like a virtual meeting, in which the participants are not putting in the effort, and are distracted. The key to having a fulfilling meeting as a participant is to listen more effectively, and this is explained in five strategies.

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

Stop Zoning Out in Zoom Meetings

Stop Zoning Out in Zoom Meetings

https://hbr.org/2020/05/stop-zoning-out-in-zoom-meetings

hbr.org

7

Key Ideas

Make Virtual Meetings More Effective

The listeners of a virtual meeting play an important role in ensuring the multi-participant meeting is a success.

Generally, listeners feel less motivated to listen, participate or take initiative. These feelings are magnified in virtual meetings and conference calls as they have more distractions present for the participant.

The Ringelmann Effect

In 1913, a French architectural engineer discovered that when a group of people pull a rope, they put in less effort, as compared to them pulling the rope alone. This came to be known as the Ringelmann Effect.

The same effect is seen in group activities like a virtual meeting, in which the participants are not putting in the effort, and are distracted. The key to having a fulfilling meeting as a participant is to listen more effectively, and this is explained in five strategies.

Define Your Values

Before the meeting starts, take a few minutes to attain self-clarity on the purpose of the meeting, your contribution, and what exactly you hope to learn from the video call.

Acknowledge Previous Statements

Before we jump into conclusions or try to make our point, we need to listen and acknowledge what has just been said by the presenter or fellow participant. Not listening or acknowledging what others say leads to long and frustrating conversations where participants are repeating themselves to be heard.

People also talk over each other in virtual meetings, and the only way to avoid all this is to listen actively.

Connect The Dots

Listening attentively makes us connect the dots and make people understand the larger dynamic, guiding the conversation in a productive direction without wasting precious time.

The fact that you have listened attentively is evident in your words, when you finally speak up.

Bring Back Your Attention

Distractions appear enticing during any activity that requires concentrations and a constant attentiveness is hard.

One way to refocus is to write down the distracting thoughts that crop up, and get back to the video call.

Ask To Repeat

If you lose track of the conversation due to a distraction or being lost in daydreams, simply apologize and ask if someone can help you understand what the topic of focus is right now. This will help other distracted souls too.

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Zoom fatigue

Zoom fatigue

2020 has thrust people into a regular virtual space.

This unofficial social experiment confirms that virtual interactions can take its toll on the brain, commonly known as Zoom fatigue....

Zoom gloom

  • A typical video call demands more intense focus on the words, as most other body language cues are missing. If somebody is really dependent on those non-verbal cues, it can be very draining not to have them.
  • Multi-person screens magnify this exhausting problem, as it challenges the brain’s central vision, forcing it to decode too many people at once.
  • If you view a single speaker at a time, you can’t recognize how non-active participants are behaving - something you otherwise would pick up with a peripheral vision.

  • For some people, the prolonged split in attention can overwhelm the brain by unfamiliar excess stimuli while being hyper-focused on searching for non-verbal cues that it can’t find.

A traditional phone call may be less taxing on the brain because it delivers on a promise to convey only a voice.

Zoom boon

For those who have neurological difficulty with in-person communication, such as those with autism, the shift to video calls has been positive.

Video calls lead to fewer people talking and less filler conversation, which relieves tension and anxiety felt by autistic individuals.

one more idea

Introducing People

Introducing People

People no longer have the option to introduce themselves to new people at their convenience (like in an office setting, for example). With the remote setting, the second someone joins an online mee...

The Waiting Room

It is advisable to enable the waiting room option for new joiners so that they are made to enter one at a time and provided with a proper introduction.

It also takes care of the risk of your meeting getting crashed by someone suddenly.

The Art Of The Pause

  • Video chats with multiple participants have a lot of cross-talk and people talking at the same time. This problem is compounded by dodgy internet speeds.

  • It is possible to listen to only one person at a time, so one has to learn the art of the pause. Stopping and staying silent will allow others to calm down.

  • Zoom also has a raise hand feature, which helps facilitate the meeting in an orderly fashion.

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Gestures: A Warning System

Gestures: A Warning System

Gestures act as an early warning system for intent, emotion, and mood. Our body language precedes the desire of our conscious minds. Our bodies know what we want before our conscious minds do.

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How to Use Your Intuition

If you've had the experience of a strong intuition about a person, or déjà vu, or a sensation in your gut that things are not right, even though on the surface it seems fine, then you've heard your unconscious mind trying to tell you something.

Learn to regularly pay attention to your unconscious mind, not just in moments when something feels amiss. With practice, your ability to hear your unconscious quickly and accurately will improve.