The following is an excerpt from the book Zooming Ahead by Dan Sullivan.
If you experimented with virtual meetings before the 2020 global pandemic forced many of us to work remotely, you probably found that there weren’t enough people using it to make it particularly useful in your daily work and personal life.
At Strategic Coach, which has offices in three countries, we’d already had some experience with virtual conferencing. It was certainly faster, but because live events were a more familiar alternative, we never made it our main focus.
Then, suddenly, a single year transformed “Zooming” into a worldwide, everyday capability for the most productive and creative individuals and teams. This is an amazing breakthrough in every area of our lives.
Before this happened, you may have been wondering and worrying whether there was any way your life and work could become more enjoyable in the years ahead. Now, suddenly, almost magically, this new Zoom way of instantly collaborating with others has transformed all of our future prospects and possibilities.
Huge productivity jump.
After just a few weeks of switching to working virtually due to the lockdown, Zoom users were achieving greater results in much less time. This has been a huge productivity jump for cooperation and teamwork.
To create my quarterly small books, I work with a cartoonist, Hamish MacDonald, who usually isn’t in the same city as I am. Since we began using Zoom to collaborate, our teamwork has drastically improved. We can see multiple documents and drafts on the screen at the same time, and go through the process together. Previously, we were always pressed for time to get the cartoons finished, and now we can get one chapter’s cartoons finalized in only three days, cutting down about 70 percent of the time it used to take.
Viewing high-resolution videos and watching high-definition TVs, we’ve all become very accustomed to, and have learned to expect, high-level visuals. And Zoom is the only company that saw this as a central factor and put together an experience we’re used to.
The visuals on Zoom are of such high quality that you feel as though you’re there with the other person. And since you don’t have to travel to be with that person, Zoom is actually superior to in-person communication.
Eliminating wasted time.
We had all become so accustomed to traveling for many of our most important work and personal engagements that we didn’t realize how much wasted time and energy were involved in all of these comings and goings. Travel involves calculating many factors—especially when traveling internationally—and requires operating according to other people’s schedules.
Now, most of this wasted time and energy is being permanently eliminated by “Zooming” to our meetings.
I’d often wonder if there would come a time when I no longer wanted to make business trips to other cities, and it had nothing to do with the coaching activities I’d do when I got there. The hours spent both traveling and recovering from trips could total half-days.
We didn’t often think about things like this because there was no alternative. But the moment everything changed due to the pandemic, even though we had to hustle to change direction and keep things going, I noticed I was experiencing less tension. I was sleeping better and exercising more.
And for every event that I was going to do via Zoom, I had more time to think through what was going to happen than I did when I was tired from traveling.
Faster results, less effort.
A Strategic Coach client from Singapore recently joined our virtual workshop at 10 a.m. Toronto time, which was 11 p.m. his time. I asked him if it was going to be a strain, and he said no, that he just rearranged his day so he could take a nap and then would be able to get eight hours of sleep after the workshop.
This is compared to the 23 hours it would take him to attend his workshop in person, with a connecting flight each way and dealing with jet lag for the following three or four days.
If you think back to all the effort that used to be required for those time-consuming travel meetings, you’ll see how much faster and easier your results are being achieved now that you’re meeting virtually.
No hassle, hurries, or delays.
We accept some degree of lateness in the in-person world, giving other people leeway and accepting their excuses for being late because sometimes we need to use those excuses ourselves.
But with Zoom, there are absolutely no travel-related reasons why you should be late. You aren’t traveling anywhere to get to your engagement. All the reasons for being late, for being unprepared, and for not being engaged are complexities that exist in the in-person world, not the Zoom world.
When you and others instantly “transport” yourselves to your Zoom meetings, the previous travel-related uncertainties are now eliminated. Your worries about being delayed by travel systems are gone. You’re relaxed about being on time.
I believe that none of the old travel systems and methods were ever going to improve. There was never going to be an end to traffic, delays, accidents, malfunctions, breakdowns, and other factors beyond our control.
But with Zoom, which operates in the virtual dimension, thousands of innovations are converging to continually multiply the usefulness of this new way of transporting yourself in the future.
The old technological systems had reached a plateau, and now we recognize that Zoom is here and making things better for all of us.