Over communicating, you can have too much of a good thing!

Can you remember a time before endless video calls? Ahhhhhh the heady days of February 2020!

Family quizzes, pub quizzes, kitchen parties and virtual music festivals in the garden were the things that got me through lockdown while remembering that there was a world outside my four walls.

Team catch ups and client meetings, all from the comfort of our own homes helped many of us in the first few months maintain some kind of normality and all these months later are  now regular events. There’s no denying that video calls are here to stay but how can we make sure these meetings don’t become meaningless? You’ve probably heard (or made) the comment “that meeting would have made good email”.

A survey of 2000 people has estimated that around 56 unproductive hours per employee since March are due to wasted time on video calls, 120% more that before lockdown. The study also identified that time preparing and then getting back to work after is around an hour each meeting.

Insomnia, headaches, eye strain, anxiety and low mood have all been attributed to technology like video calls during lockdown and the following months.

Communication remains an important part of managing remote teams and working with clients but over communicating will have a negative impact.

There’s a fine line between good, effective communication and over communication, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Have meetings or calls at suitable times
  • Only involve the relevant people
  • Don’t have meetings longer any longer than the need to be
  • Have an agenda and try to keep to the point of the meeting
  • Have a comfort break
  • Use the phone rather than a video call if you can
  • Send an email rather than setting up a video call
  • Make social get togethers optional for attendees

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