Worldwide, we’re in lockdown with this once in a hundred years event, and no one knows what the days ahead look like and when things will return to some kind of normality. COVID-19 has forced us all to re-invent, innovate and get creative.
I’ve worked with remote teams for a long time and furthermore I enjoy learning new software and new ways of communicating. I recognise this doesn’t come naturally for everyone and what I’m observing right now is a knee-jerk reaction caused by this sense of panic as people scramble for the right solutions.
Conferences are cancelled. Church communities are pre-recording services and pointing their members to YouTube videos and Facebook Live events, but what we miss out on in both these scenarios is community. In many cases, online video is about convenience. Quick fixes. But without the right solutions, we’re starving our community and depriving them of the space to process, together. (Note: Thinking of cancelling your event. Stop. Get in touch and we’ll help you re-strategise an alternative path forward.)
It’s a mad scramble now, but I believe in the weeks to come there will be an effort to find better alternatives. This is where my focus has been. Preparing for this, this past week I’ve been shooting videos on the basics, like what video chat services are best, and how the platform is only one perspective of the solution. We must consider the audience and story and their cross-relationship as we build effective communication.
As you’re reading this, perhaps you’re scrambling for answers, my advice is to keep things simple. Ask the question… What do I need to get done?
In the context of video chat, conferencing and webinars, as yourself whether you want to have a 1:1 meeting with someone or you want to host a whole group?
Let me just back up a second and emphasise this point… We’ve got these fantastic, sophisticated devices in our pockets, and so often we just message people! Right now we’re being instructed to exercise social distancing and my concern is what we miss in the no verbal component of our communication could mean we misunderstand or worse. I’ve always encouraged to practice being present above all other forms of communication. Body language is important. Psychologists will tell you this. Your body language or none verbal language counts a lot towards a conversation.
This is why I’m a big supporter of online video chat as a substitute for in-person conversations when it is not possible to be in the same proximity to the person you want to speak to.
If you’ve got a difficult problem to work out, then a face to face conversation will make a difference to what you hear.
So… Have more video chat conversations folks.
Finally, here are two videos that I believe will be helpful at this time when we’re all having more online meetings.