“The least productive people are usually those who are most interested in holding meetings,” according to US economist Thomas Sowell – but do meetings really have to be that way?
We sure do spend enough time in them every day.
The decision-making platform Attentiv estimates that around 11m meetings are held in the US every single day, costing on average $338 in salaries alone.
So why do we do it?
Well, when meetings are good, they’re really good – effective meetings can move mountains when it comes to setting goals, tracking progress, encouraging collaboration and creating strong teams.
But when they’re bad….yowch! We’ve all been in that kind of meeting.
And while Thomas Sowell is harsh about unproductive people seeking meetings, maybe it’s more that bad meetings create unproductive people.
So what 4 elements turn bad meetings good?
- Finding and booking the right space
- Effective invites
- Getting the facilities and equipment right
- Avoiding no-shows
Finding and booking the right space
This is one of the biggest barriers to holding an effective meeting – particularly if you are organizing a get-together in multiple locations or across time zones.
Admin time can be huge if you’re trying to source space in different buildings, particularly if you have to rely on paper diaries or spreadsheets.
Meeting software can provide an effortless answer, giving users the ability to identify the kind of space they need and book it via an app, even across different locations – it will take time zones into consideration automatically, which is a huge time-saving benefit for the organizer (see this video).
You don’t just invite attendees to a meeting, you also need to be sure that support staff are aware of your needs. These can include the people who set up and take down the room, the caterers, maybe the heating and ventilation team…
That’s why meeting software is designed to include all the resources of an effective meeting, eliminating the kind of delays that can be caused by, say, a room not configured so you can get started right away.
Getting the facilities and equipment right
More and more meetings are being held by video conference these days, saving companies a fortune in time and travel and reducing carbon expenditure.
However, if AV or video equipment are not correctly organized, they’re a leading cause of meeting inefficiency.
Meeting software keeps an up to date inventory of available equipment, allowing employees to book it at the same time as they reserve their meeting space.
Other facilities you need for your meeting can also be included in the same transaction – catering, for example.
Don’t you hate these? How often have you sat on a video conference waiting for someone to join?
Cut off this problem at the root with meeting software that automatically informs everyone involved in the meeting of the full details – and also of any changes that happen.
In addition, good meeting software integrates with digital signage that advises when a room is occupied and also acts as a great wayfinding guide for those attending in person.
The technology also integrates with room and desk occupancy sensors that detect when people haven’t turned up, and release the space back into availability.
Where meeting software can’t help…
Well, it can’t set a good meeting agenda for you. And it can’t stop the boss going on and on and on, nor prevent a discussion becoming an argument.
But at least it can take away the strain of organization, round up the attendees, get them to the right place and make sure everyone gets that all-important cup of coffee on time.
Across 11m meetings every day, that’s GOT to count for something…
Tired of bad meetings? See how meeting software makes your meeting perfect!