The comfort of seeing a face…
Working from home has had its advantages, not having to worry about getting to the bus stop on time, or what clothes to put on in the morning, but I have really missed the face to face interactions, particularly when meeting new participants (via a phone call) who are understandably nervous.
I’m quite phone phobic myself and have to just jump in and make myself sound confident “Hi my name is Clare and its good to meet you, (even if it’s over the phone”). I have experienced Zoom meetings so I’m learning and adjusting to Video Calls but my thoughts are that I don’t really like them but they are necessary and I just have to get on with it
When I’m meeting a new Participant on the phone I have an appreciation of the courage it has taken for them to speak to me but I miss the social interaction/non-verbal cues such as facial expression and their body movements which show how they feel without using words that you get when meeting someone face to face
Since the last week in July we have managed to put in place limited pre booked face to face meetings in a risk assessed COVID aware environment and it has been so nice to be able to meet Participants I have only spoken to on the phone, or catch up with Participants I would have (pre COVID) met face to face with on a regular basis.
Every Participant I’ve been able to meet face to face since, whether I first met them on the phone during Lockdown or were existing Participants before Lockdown have said how they have appreciated that face to face experience. They feel they are being supported to be productive and constructive in their journey into work and / or training, particularly in these ever changing times of employment/training opportunities due to COVID.