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EXPOSED: The True Cost of Meetings

Cost of Meetings Infographic

Meetings are an essential part of any business, however with the need to maximise productivity and minimise unnecessary costs, we examine the true cost of meetings and how you can transform their effectiveness.

As the saying goes, “If you want to kill time, a meeting is the perfect weapon” which says everything about their effectiveness in today’s business.

Meetings can vary from the “Have You Got a Minute” meeting to the “Grab a Coffee” meeting to the “Status Update” meeting to the full blown “All Together Now” meeting.

And if you look around any meeting you attend, there is guaranteed to be at least 1 person who is gaining nothing from being there and contributing even less.

In fact, the stats show that senior managers can spend as much as 50% of their time tied up in meetings.  That is a significant amount of time and therefore cost associated with meetings. But how productive are they and what form do they take?

We regularly see 4 categories of meetings when speaking to clients about how they work and how they use space in their day to day operations.

The “Have You Got a Minute” meetings are one of the biggest time thieves and most prevalent in open plan offices where people are seen to have permission to interrupt their colleagues. If this involves middle or senior managers, the costs can quickly rack up. Therefore, the use of glass partitioning to create offices for ‘high value’ managers can transform their productivity and provide a space where private issues can be discussed.

The “Grab a Coffee” meetings can be hugely productive and allow colleagues to discuss sensitive issues. However, rather than taking them offsite to the local coffee shop, why not use high back sofas or pods to create private environments for informal meetings?

The “Status update” meetings can be a key feature of busy workplaces to keep everyone on track, however, they can drag on and be unproductive for most attendees. By creating stand up meeting areas with adjustable tables and white walls, you will dramatically reduce the time spent in the meeting whilst still achieving everything you need to.

The “All Together Now” meeting, where the entire department gets together for a presentation or meeting, is one of those which would make your eyes start to water if you were to start counting even just the salary costs never mind the charge out rates. These have to be kept to an absolute minimum, both in frequency and length.

Stats show that people start switching off after 20 minutes, so keep them short, sharp and to the point.

The use of boardrooms or dedicated meeting areas, again using glass partitioning, can make these meetings more productive by getting people away from their normal working environment, minimizing distractions and creating a sense of importance.

To see how we have improved meeting spaces for our clients and reduced the cost of meetings, check out our interiors space pages