It may have a negative impact on companies..virtual meetings reduce creativity

3 May, 2022
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It may have a negative impact on companies..virtual meetings reduce creativity

A new study revealed that virtual meetings of the “Zoom” application may have a negative impact on companies, which increased demand by institutions with the outbreak of the new “Corona” pandemic two years ago, with the implementation of the work-from-home policy.

The study indicated that these meetings may have an impact on the production of new ideas and suggestions by so-called "brainstorming", as well as on the ability of the work team to exchange ideas effectively, which affects the growth and revenues of many companies.

The authors of the study, published in the scientific journal "Nature" from Columbia University, put nearly 1,500 people in pairs via a video call, or in person, and asked them to come up with new ideas about products. They found that couples who interacted face-to-face produced more creative ideas, compared to couples who communicated virtually.

To investigate how the use of video calls affects the generation of collaborative ideas, researchers recruited 1,490 people across five communications infrastructure company sites (in Europe, the Middle East, and South Asia).

The study showed that the pairs who worked via the Zoom app produced an average of 7.43 ideas per hour, while their peers who communicated in person produced an average of 8.58 ideas.

However, when getting to the point of asking for a settled idea to be implemented, the video call pairs were no less effective. 

The study authors suggest that video calls focus on on-screen communication, narrowing people's focus and impeding "the broad and expanded process of idea generation." The study emphasizes that one of the main disadvantages of working is the presence of a lesser community.

The scientists confirmed that the couples' ability to generate creative ideas was significantly related to their ability to make eye contact with their partners and stare into the room.

In contrast, they explained that when two people look each other's eyes on the screen, neither of them appears to communicate with the other, which can affect communication and result in fewer ideas overall.

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