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“Work is a Contact Sport” – My Challenge to the Tech Industry

eye contact

Like most of you, I like to make eye contact when I interact with people. Human connection is what creates understanding, solves problems, incites action, and provides meaning in life. In work too, you connect and make contact with people. Therefore, work is a contact sport, especially when your task is to take teams and individuals on an exhilarating ride of transformation and innovation towards industry-leading performance.

And like most of you, while I rate Teams and Zooms over a phone call and an email, I’ve had a fair few Teams calls where the person I interacted with stared purposefully at my collar or left or my head, anywhere but into my eyes. No doubt I was the same. A socially awkward change leader, very effective…

So, I put a challenge out to the technology sector: develop a monitor where the camera is in the screen, not above it. Better still, the whole screen is made up of little cameras and some smart recognition technology, AI or not, finds my eyes and ensures I am perpetually making eye contact throughout my Teams session. I’m sure that this is possible, and I’d be happy to pay for this, and countless others too.

Here’s the caveat: I am old enough to have started work on typewriters so if I missed a technology breakthrough due to my luddite age, and you can already get these screen at Noel Leeming, let me know. Otherwise comment on this post if you think this is a good idea, and I will petition the tech companies!


About the author: Geerten Lengkeek is the Managing Director of Productivity People and Co-founder of the Global Lean Alliance