The Insiders Incentives

10 tips for dealing with Zoom fatigue

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Find ways to increase engagement during online meetings and events

2020 and 2021 feel like the years of online meetings and conference calls.

The Global Pandemic meant that in 2020 we rapidly found ourselves spending hours and hours on a platform many of us hadn’t even heard of before. Suddenly “Shall we have a Zoom on this” and “You’re on mute!” became the year’s unhappy catchphrases.

Although, happily, restrictions are lifting online events and meetings are here to stay to some degree. They offer some practical benefits especially for geographically spread teams but having had so little in-person contact and having spent so long on video calls a genuine sense of “zoom fatigue” has set in.

After one and a half year of Zoom doom, how can we make sure that these online meetings and conference calls capture participants attention and are worthwhile and enjoyable?

10 tips for more engaging online meetings

The Algarve Insiders have condensed their years of experience in organising events into a handy list of tips for making sure your online calls are engaging and valuable.

  1. Mix up the format – Experiment with different formats to keep online meetings varied e.g. Q&A, virtual whiteboard sessions, breakouts discussions with smaller groups, play games, take a poll or have a pop quiz.
  2. Focus on Human Connection – rather than getting straight onto the agenda of the meeting leave space for checking in with colleagues and look for opportunities for human interaction.
  3. Emotional Needs – consider what experience participants will have on their emotional state. What do participants want on an emotional level?
  4. Time off Camera – for longer calls especially, giving time off-camera can be helpful. After initial introductions and hellos invite everyone to turn off cameras for a section of the meeting.
  5. Innovative activities that engage the senses – Video calls are all about looking and listening. Plan something different for the team to do during the call that engages taste, smell and touch too. Cookery or mixology classes work really well for this.
  6. Move into another space – encourage everyone to take their laptop or phone and take the call somewhere other than their desk. Perhaps they have a nice patio or would enjoy sitting on the sofa for a change?
  7. Guest speakers – inviting an expert to come and speak to your team is a great way to add variety and generate more engagement. They may be someone in your industry or something completely unrelated.
  8. Interaction – Look for opportunities to include interaction. Most video conferencing platforms include chat functionality, whiteboards and screen sharing. Use these to increase opportunities for participants to interact in different ways.
  9. Adapt offline activities – Just because the call is online doesn’t restrict you to all activities being digital too. Games like scavenger hunts or rock, paper, scissors adapt easily for onscreen use.
  10. Movement – We are all spending way too much time sat at our desks, look for ways to get participants moving during the meeting. Encourage everyone to dial in using a mobile device and have a walking meeting or incorporate some stretch breaks.

We hope you find these tips helpful, if you would like to discuss your ideas for an online or hybrid event we’d be happy to help. Contact Us 


Personalised incentives unlock employee engagement


[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Incentive Travel is the ultimate reward in terms of motivation

Are only a third of your employees engaged with their work?

A recent Gallup poll that evaluated employee engagement in the US, found that even though employee engagement is higher than ever, still only about a third (34%) meet their criteria of “those who are involved in, enthusiastic about and committed to their work and workplace.” That leaves a huge 68% of employees who are not engaged.

Most employees in the ‘not engaged category’ may appear generally happy but they only do the minimum required and will leave quickly for a slightly better offer.

Employee engagement leads to better business performance

Perhaps you take the view that losing employees that aren’t engaged with your business is ok – maybe you feel employee turnover is good for business? Not according to a recent survey by Achievers Workforce Institute who’s 2021 Engagement and Retention Report found that “ Highly engaged employers experience a 25 to 59% decrease in turnover and 41% lower absentee rates.”

Both the Gallup Poll and the Achievers Workforce Institute’s report stress the importance of recognition to improve employee engagement. Workers need to feel that their hard work is noticed and appreciated. They need to know that they are seen as a person not a number and that their contribution really matters.

Cold hard cash isn’t the answer

Paying cash bonuses is the most common form of reward and recognition but the problem with cold hard cash is just that – it’s cold and hard! Paying bonuses doesn’t elicit the same emotional response and it doesn’t demonstrate that an employer knows anything about the employee.

An expanding body of academic research dating back to the 70s shows that travel and non-cash rewards deliver a better ROI than cash bonuses. This is because cash rewards are often used for mundane things like paying electricity bills or paying down debt, whereas travel and experiences are associated with fun and luxury. Employees find non-cash rewards more motivational because they connect on an emotional level.

No wonder travel remains one of the most popular and fast-growing tools that businesses are using to recognise employee contributions. It can become an even more powerful gesture if the trip has been personalised to suit a specific individual.

Recognition needs to be “felt”

At its simplest level engagement is all about emotion and rewards must meet an emotional need to be effective. This is why incentive travel is such an valuable tool for employee engagement.

Incentive travel provides unforgettable experiences that employees will treasure and unlike cash bonuses there’s no stigma attached to discussing it. Talking about and remembering their travel experiences means that the benefits are longer lasting than a cash bonus that is swiftly forgotten.

According to the Incentive Federation “travel represents the ultimate reward in terms of motivation”.

Incentive Travel done well includes personalisation

Incentive travel is most effective when employees not only feel rewarded but also feel that their employer has thought about the choices surrounding the trip to make sure they are appropriate to the individual.

Working with a good incentive travel provider who will look at the trip from an experience and individual level as well as at the business needs is key.

Everything should be carefully and thoughtfully planned out to include personal touches, take account of individual preferances and interests.

Successful businesses that understand the importance of employee engagement use incentive travel because they recognise that employees find it more rewarding. Now the challenge is for businesses to take this a step further and really embrace personalisation by focusing on the experiences their incentive travel programs deliver.

If you would like to speak to Algarve Insiders about how we could develop a personalised inventive travel program for you.  Contact Us[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]