Frasier’s Back – and I Know how he Feels!

Great news that Frasier is returning, but what’s that got to do with learning? Well….

Last week I ran six sessions to over 100 people. Only around 10% used their cameras at any point. I had galleries full of black squares and initials, which made me feel like a radio DJ. I nicely gave the benefits of using cameras and suggested they get turned on. At various points, I momentarily turned off my camera mid-delivery and was told that it was less engaging….

Of course, we can use voice, breakouts, discussions and good slides to get interaction and make the sessions work, but isn’t it more productive, more inclusive, even common courtesy to show our faces on virtual meetings/sessions?

Now, I know there are bandwidth issues, privacy issues, even human rights issues for some. But when people ask me about how to get virtual engagement, or tell me that it’s ‘not as good as face to face’ and they do that while their cameras are off, please permit me to have some alarm bells ringing.

If you run virtual meetings, please create a ‘cameras on’ culture. It increases engagement, inclusivity and interaction, while bringing us closer to what we experience in-person. Yes, there are clear exceptions – let’s keep them as such and make cameras on the norm.

© PT Performance Solutions Ltd

By Paul Tran

Paul Tran helps people think and do things differently through training, facilitation, coaching writing and music. He enjoys spending time in nature, on beaches and mountains.