The tool that will get you out of your next zoom meeting

Plus, one that works even better…

Zoom Escaper, by Sam Lavigne.

Artist and certifiable genius Sam Lavigne has created the best since the vaccine: Zoom Escaper. The free web app that lets you add fake audio effects to your Zoom call — giving you the perfect excuse to escape.

Barking dog? You got it. Construction? No problem. Crying baby or — even better — crying man? Dealer’s choice. And, for all of you living alone in an low-traffic area? The piéce de resistánce: choppy audio and echoes.

We don’t deserve him.

And listen, we don’t steal Sam’s thunder or anything, but we too, have a free tool that will get you out of most Zoom meetings…

Honest communication

*sad trombone*

We know, we know, it’s not as sexy as a man crying. But being open and honest about whether you’re able to show up mentally for a call or meeting is actually the most respectful thing you can do for your team and yourself.

So, if you’re at the end of your quarantine rope and you have enough lead time before the meeting, we invite you to communicate that you understand the meeting is important and you want to be fully present for it — whether that means rescheduling, or if you’re not the only other person on the call, asking for meeting notes to digest and respond to thoughtfully afterwards.

Obviously, some meetings just need to happen.

But, there’s nothing worse than spending an hour presenting to a coworker who is mentally checked out, or just isn’t in the right headspace to have a productive conversation.

What if you’re redlining and a meeting absolutely can’t be rescheduled (or the goal of the meeting can’t be achieved asynchronously)? Try suggesting another modality, like a “walk n talk” over the phone, instead of a video call from your desk. Being authentic and human about where you’re at with your coworkers invites them to do the same (and will hopefully spare you all those awful roadblock meetings where you just can’t seem to get anything done.

Here’s the point: Sure, you could use a zoom hack to simulate a mysterious roommate weeping (and we plan to the next chance we get — it’s hilarious). But we think being direct will save you and your peers a lot more time and headaches.

Speechless is an organization that uses Improv Thinking to help people be themselves and be heard. Visit https://www.speechlessinc.com/ for more info.

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