Meetings – we love them and hate them. Love them because they are where the magic of collaboration and socialising happens; hate them because they can be time-consuming and tedious.
The curse of back-to-back meetings
But what’s far worse is the modern-day curse: back-to-back meetings.
Now more and more people work outside the office for at least some of the time, the virtual meeting has proliferated. When used carefully, that’s great for teambuilding, morale and providing an engaging employee experience, binding teams together.
But because virtual meetings are now so common, and so easy to organize, some people are finding their diaries filling up quickly. And that’s NOT a positive thing – blogger Professor Josh Hammonds recently reported these gloomy statistics:
- 70% – the number of managers who feel meetings are unproductive
- 55% – feel overwhelmed by the number of meetings each day
- 20% – feel exhausted at the end.
That’s not great, particularly when you remember how important the employee experience is in retaining talent and promoting wellbeing.
How advanced workplace management technology can help
So how can today’s advanced workplace management technology help?
Workplace influencer Luis De Souza, CEO of NFS Technology, said: “Leaders today recognise that talent retention and employee wellbeing rely on creating a working environment where the level of stress is kept to a minimum.
“So taking best practice from our corporate clients worldwide, we’ve identified 5 ways to lift the burden of back-to-back meetings from employees working a hybrid environment.”
5 ways to use technology to make every meeting count
5 ways to use technology to make every meeting count:
1. Schedule meetings holistically
2. Minimize the need for meetings with colleague search
3. Reduce the frustration of no-shows
4. When meetings are necessary, make sure they run smoothly
5. Cater for ad-hoc meeting requirements.
Schedule meetings holistically
A good meeting is not one that follows the one before it without a break. When that happens, those taking part are distracted, tired and need to skip from one topic to another, which is effortful.
By using meeting scheduling technology, leaders can make sure meetings are properly spread out – and make judgements about how necessary they are in the first place.
Minimize the need for meetings with colleague search
Collaboration does not always depend on organized meetings. Workplace management technology now allows people to use an app to search for when and where their colleagues are in the office, and book desks or a collaboration space near them in a few clicks.
Reduce the frustration of no-shows
One of the major frustrations of attending a meeting is discovering that others have not shown up. Meeting scheduling technology minimizes the problem because when you send out the invitations via your app, it also keeps attendees up to date with any changes you need to make. The technology integrates with visitor management and display panels that guide guests to the correct place on time.
So much easier to make sure everyone you need is in the right place at the right time.
When meetings are necessary, make sure they run smoothly
Many meetings are absolutely necessary, of course, and for hybrid workers visiting the office it’s crucial to get the most out of every occasion.
Workspace management technology such as Rendezvous enable organizers to book catering and facilities such as AV and videoconferencing at the same time as they book rooms on the app – and the rooms can even be set up so the conference starts up as soon as attendees arrive.
The software also integrates with hardware such as wayfinding displays and in-room panels where the time of the meeting can be extended or extra catering ordered without anyone having to leave the room.
It all adds up to a seamless meeting experience that reduces frustration, keeps timescales tight and helps everyone enjoy a positive get-together.
Cater for ad-hoc meeting requirements
When spontaneous meetings are needed, workspace technology makes it easy to find suitable space quickly, using the graphical floorplan on the app. Integrated display panels also indicate at a glance when a meeting room is going to be available, and users can book the room from the panel without bothering the occupants.
Why meetings are a cultural issue
Meetings are a cultural issue
In the NWOW (new way of working), leaders of hybrid workplaces are being required to develop and use a range of human skills including empathy and friendliness alongside traditional management techniques.
If you want to encourage your workers to come to the office, it needs to be a great place to work. Controlling the length, frequency and efficiency of meetings is a crucial part of building a culture that promotes wellness and encourages staff to do their best.
Because as Jason Fried, CEO of Basecamp, says:
“Meetings should be like salt. A spice sprinkled carefully to enhance a dish, not poured recklessly over every forkful. Too much salt spoils a dish. Too many meetings destroy morale and motivation.”
So employ the right technology to control your company meetings, and use it wisely. The whole organization will benefit.