Why Video Conferencing May Be Harming Your Productivity
The past year has seen an incredible amount of transformation in the world of efficiency and productivity. From the pandemic forcing millions to adapt their routines to the nature of technology continuing to evolve, more and more people are using digital resources to connect and collaborate.
Just one year ago, few people would have known what a “Zoom call” meant – yet this concept is ubiquitous today. Video conferencing in general has been growing in popularity in recent years, but there are notable disadvantages to the process.
To help businesses and brands avoid potential pitfalls, let’s discuss some examples where the dynamic of video conferencing may be harming productivity and morale.
Physical Damage to the Body
One of the biggest long-term concerns facing this recent trend of video conferencing is the reality that it can have an out-sized toll on physical performance. One such example pertains to the eyes: by spending more and more time looking at computer screens in lieu of physical meetings, strain to the eyes becomes a very big concern.
There are other risks to consider as well. The general lack of mobility from spending excessive amounts of time sitting down behind a desk is well-documented in terms of effects; everything from joint damage to weight gain and added stress are all potential risk factors. Ultimately, some of these issues can be avoided by pinging users on their mobile devices instead of requiring them to sit at computers to participate. However, avoiding these calls whenever possible is still recommended from a physical health perspective.
It might surprise business executives, but the use of technology has created an excessive demand on employees and users. While optimizing the workplace for efficiency is ideal, utilizing efficient measures in situations where they are not necessary can have a real impact on morale. Being asked to join the seventh Zoom call of the week to chat about virtually nothing will gradually increase stress and harm employee perceptions of the process.
As such, restricting video conferencing to occasions where true in-person collaboration is needed should be the goal. There are rarely any business endeavors or functions where daily conference calls are required: utilize other options such as Slack, email and group direct messaging functions as alternatives when possible.
A Lack of Personal Contact
Last but not least, it is vital to remember that video conferencing does provide some intimacy between co-workers and communicators – but it is not a sure-fire solution or replacement for these measures. While the pandemic has stretched our ability to interact one-on-one in some settings, nothing can replace personal contact in business or operational settings.
Whenever interacting face-to-face is possible and logistically sound, ditching the strategy of pinging users for video conferences should be embraced. While various factors such as distance and timing can merit the use of video conferencing solutions, do remember that many employees work better when interacting face-to-face.
In this topsy-turvy world, many elements are pressuring us to interact in new and exotic ways. Video conferencing can be a sure-fire solution for real-time collaboration when face-to-face or person-to-person interactions are not feasible, but never forget about the downsides to this dynamic. To ensure your employees are both physically and mentally healthy, a balance must be maintained.