From the CEO: How to bring movie magic to your virtual experiences

AME | August 21, 2020

As I’ve mentioned before, I love movies. Enjoying a movie in the theater is the simple pleasure that I’ve missed most during the pandemic. Like many of you, I am focused on the many bigger issues at play in the world, but seeing a movie in the theater has always been where I escape from the everyday.

You can imagine my excitement that movie theaters are reopening. Even with social distancing guidelines, mask requirements and other new health and safety practices, to me there is nothing like being in the cinema to watch a movie on the big screen.

Many of us are still conducting much of our work on smaller screens. We’re interacting with our colleagues through Zoom instead of in-person meetings. In some cases, we’re virtually going to the gemba while someone remotely broadcasts from a phone or GoPro. Assessments, feedback and improvement ideas are often being conveyed on a screen.

We live so much of our lives on screens, that most of us probably think of ourselves as screen time pros, but as a movie aficionado, here are my three lessons that you can transfer from the big screen to the small screen:

  1. Eliminate distractions
    One of the biggest draws of seeing a movie in the theater is the immersive experience. Kick back in a comfy chair, tune out everything and get wrapped up in what’s happening on the screen. The same is true for virtual meetings and events. When you join an AME virtual tour, workshop or the AME International Conference, visualize the “silence your cell phone” teaser that proceeds every movie. Put your phone or tablet on Do Not Disturb mode, close your email program and web browser and find a quiet place away from others. Stay focused and you’ll be more attuned to pick up nuances in a presentation, see others’ reactions and get more out of the experience.
  2. Expose yourself to different stories, er, programming
    Among my favorite movies are Casablanca, Hidden Figures, The Shining, Les Misérables and Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. These are very different movies, but all tell compelling stories in creative ways that have exposed me to different ideas and points of view. Similarly, to get the most out of your virtual learning experience, I recommend exploring different topics, formats and presenters/facilitators. You will get a different experience at a virtual tour than you will at one of our workshops or our conference, but each will enhance your learning and keep things fresh and engaging while enriching your continuous improvement journey.
  3. Enjoy the popcorn
    The best virtual events are entertaining and informative, just like the movies. So why not enjoy an AME tour like you would a movie? This might mean having a snack or sitting in a favorite chair. I am a popcorn addict and love eating fresh theater popcorn. In virtual meetings, popcorn might not be the right choice — especially if you plan to take notes without getting butter on your pen or keyboard — but find an alternative that works for you. That might be coffee, tea or some other snack, or it could be as simple as settling into your most comfortable chair with a cozy blanket. Do whatever it takes to get absorbed into what’s happening on your screen.

Keep these three tips in mind as you participate in anKeep these three tips in mind as you participate in an AME International Conference keynote, session or tour, interact during one of our weekly coffee break idea exchange or participate in a virtual workshop, tour or webinar, and you’ll be more likely to stay engaged and receptive to new opportunities to share, learn and grow.

As always, please stay safe and keep looking out for one another.


P.S. You have just 10 more days to take advantage of AME’s Last Chance Discount! Sign up by 8/31 to save on your conference registration!