The Fine Art Of Interrupting People On Zoom
13 Oct 2023
Allison Shapira doesn’t shy away from using her voice: A self-proclaimed extrovert, the founder of a public speaking training firm and a former opera singer, she’s rarely had trouble knowing how to speak up. But even Shapira makes mistakes when it comes to that nuanced yet high-stakes act of virtual etiquette: Interrupting someone else on a Zoom call.
“It’s inherently rude [to interrupt], and yet sometimes it’s necessary to protect the conversation—or because the internet is spotty,” says Shapira, who recently had to be reminded to use the “raise hand” button when a colleague said she was interrupting too much. In a virtual setting where people are distracted, she says, technology delays reactions and in-person cues are missing. “It’s a human psychology issue,” she says, not just a tech one.