Don't Be Afraid to Show Your Smilin' Face!
So we've had 2 weeks so far of social distancing (and 4 to go), which for many of us, is code for steer clear.
After crash courses in Webex and Zoom, I couldn't wait to give them a go. Really didn't have much choice since the college students I see once per week for 2.5 hours all went home for the semester. Our first class together was last Friday morning. It wasn't perfect. I was a bit herky jerky moving from my face to Power Point and back, but I promised my students I would practice. I asked them to give me some pointers by email when the class was over about how to make it better. Many did. One surprise was that my class was one of the only "live" ones!! In some cases, the other professors chose to pre-record their class and the students watch it when they want, on their own. My students were so glad to BE TOGETHER!!!!!! That is what people need more right now than the reading, writing and arithmetic (or Lean Operations Management)!!
I set up Webex meetings pretty much every day with my clients also. In several cases, given the option to "just call in" or show your face live, many opted for voice only. The difference between the voice only meetings and the meetings when everyone was in the room was like the difference between Alpo and filet mignon! First, there was much more engagement. On the voice only calls, there was MUCH more dead time. I suppose some of the attendees went and re-arranged their sock drawer, went to hunt aardvarks then came back. In the full video meetings, it was literally like being in the same room.....TOGETHER! Second, every meeting where people showed up with their faces was 1000x more fun!!
More meetings this week. My goal is to try to convince everyone to show their face. For those of you who "do this all the time", probably not a big deal. There are, however, many people who have never done it (i was one). Laptop, Surface Pro, cell phone, Webex, GoToMeeting, Zoom, Google Classroom, Facetime-doesn't matter, it is worth the effort. Do your huddles, Gemba Walks, A3 closings, everything. We just need faces.
We're all in this together, so let's be together, face and all!! If I can do it with that mug, anyone can!