We Used to Hide Behind Our Screens — and Now They’re a Lifeline

Bestselling author Erica Keswin asks: Why didn’t we do this before?

Katie Couric
Wake-Up Call
Published in
3 min readApr 4, 2020


Photo by Allie Smith on Unsplash

Today, for my Wake-Up Call newsletter (subscribe here!), I’m sharing an essay from bestselling author Erica Keswin. Read on.

My brother-in-law is a Rabbi. Two weeks ago, he held a zoom meeting with his team to update everyone on policies, protocols and how they were going to proceed in light of the coronavirus. They all did the work they needed to do, but also connected on a human level, sharing their feelings, making themselves vulnerable.

At the end of the call, he wondered to himself: Why didn’t we do this before?

I’ve been asking myself the same question.

In my career as a speaker and author, I talk a lot to companies about finding the “sweet spot” between tech and connect. How do we leverage all that’s great about technology, but also put technology “in its place” and connect face to face, on a deeper level? Overnight, connecting face to face was taken off the table, so, like my brother-in-law, many of us turned to our technology.

Yes, we got our work done, made contingency plans for our business, and held critical meetings. But we also turned to our technology to help us bring our human to this new work from home reality and to deepen relationships with our colleagues, our bosses and our teams.

I knew we had it in us. I didn’t know it would take something this extreme to get there.

And in a radical turn of events, many leaders have shared with me that, unlike in past virtual meetings, where they had to press their team to turn their cameras on, this time everyone volunteered to do it, and actually had their eyes up instead of down on their devices, mindlessly scrolling.

One thing is for sure: the world has snapped to attention.

Here are a few examples of ways companies have found the sweet spot in the past week.

Heidi Zak, co-founder and co-CEO of ThirdLove, had a virtual happy hour with over 60 people in attendance. They made some announcements, had a cocktail and employees gave tours of their home bars. What a way to really get to know someone!



Katie Couric
Wake-Up Call

Founder, Katie Couric Media. Newscaster: Wake-Up Call. Podcaster: Next Question. Doc filmmaker. @SU2C founder.