The impact of digital communication on mental health

The pandemic has changed the way managers and employees communicate and collaborate. On the one hand, 87% of office workers can identify the ways remote working and digital communication tools have improved their work. In contrast, 62% said poor communication or misinterpretation of digital messages at work negatively affects their mental health.

These are the findings of the new “Building Connection in the Post-Modern Workplace” report from Loom, the video messaging platform for the modern workplace.

In the survey, nearly 3,000 adults in the US and UK shared their feelings about traditional communication tools used in the workplace. Overall, it doesn’t work and 72% say they are frustrated with their digital communication tools.

The same study found that workers still struggle to communicate clearly, and 91% of office workers have had their digital messages misunderstood or misinterpreted at work.

Additionally, 20% said miscommunication or misinterpretation resulted in a reprimand, demotion or even termination. Employees spend a considerable amount of time worrying about possible misunderstandings, costing American businesses at least $128 billion every year.

“Slack-Splaining”

To make sure they are clear, office workers practice “Slack-Splaining”. In this regard, 97% of respondents felt the need to add something to the digital communication to clarify the tone, and 93% felt the need to write several sentences to explain something completely.

In non-verbal communication, misinterpretation can distort the original message. To avoid confusion, 82% felt the need to use additional punctuation (e.g.!!,?!?…), while 77% felt the need to use emojis, with 25% saying the do often.

Low productivity

When it comes to productivity, 39% of office workers spend three or more hours a week in meetings with clients, 27% in company and team meetings, and 25% in informal one-on-one meetings with managers or advisors. The average office worker’s daily message count includes 32 emails, 21 instant messages/chats, 13 text messages, and 12 one-to-one phone calls.

Every week, office workers waste an average of one hour and 42 minutes scheduling and rescheduling calls to the workplace, costing US businesses $1.85 billion a week.

The video dilemma

Can the use of video be the solution to improve communication? Tools like asynchronous video can provide common ground for employees: 81% of workers said their workplace currently uses asynchronous video, and 36% said recorded meetings were the best side effect of working at home. distance.

By contrast, the results show that nearly two-thirds (62%) of office workers admit to multitasking on video calls, and a quarter (28%) even do so on calls where they’re supposed to be talking. Additionally, 98% of office workers are stressed by group video conferencing, making it one of the most stressful forms of communication.

The bright side

All is not bad, although there is still a lot to be done to optimize remote work. The survey found that digital communication tools have allowed some employees to develop and show their personalities more than in a traditional office environment, with 58% saying that showing their personalities at work helps them feel more comfortable. engage and motivate them.

To read the full report, click here.

In this article, you learned that:

  • 62% said poor communication or misinterpretation of digital messages at work has a negative impact on their mental health.
  • 97% of respondents felt the need to add something in digital communication to clarify the tone.
  • 93% felt the need to write several sentences to explain something completely
  • Employees spend a considerable amount of time worrying about possible misunderstandings, costing American businesses at least $128 billion every year.

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