Useless Meetings Are a Waste of Time and Money
There are good meetings and there are bad meetings. Bad meetings may drone on forever, dance around the main purpose of the meeting and leave you feeling like you have just wasted your time. Whereas effective meetings leave you feeling energized and accomplished with something to take away.
Meetings that don’t lead to sustained results for the company. A poorly run meeting that is unproductive, long and disorganised is simply a waste of time and money for you and your company. Everyone knows about them, at least on a qualitative level, but few managers step up to solve the problem.
A reason for that is because no one really thinks about the real-world costs associated with bad meetings. Citrix GoToMeeting have calculated the time collectively wasted in bad meetings everyday worldwide, the cost would probably equate to the annual GDP of a small country.
Furthermore, Wolf Management Consultants asserts that 73 percent of professionals admit to doing unrelated work in meetings and 29 percent dozed off in meetings.
Common Characteristics of Good and Bad Meetings
Surveys conducted by Citrix GoToMeeting have also concluded that the top five common characteristics of a good and bad meeting is shown below:
The goal of the meeting is clear
Clear actions are assigned
Action items are followed up on
Decisions get made
An agenda is distributed prior to the meeting
No clear goal has been set
The meeting goes off topic
There is a lack of structure
Attendees are inattentive
No decisions are made
By addressing the issues of a bad meeting and incorporating the characteristics of a good meeting into your meetings, this will lead to expected, positive and constructive outcomes.
Save Money on Meetings
An employee’s time is a company’s most undervalued asset. To waste less of it, start by adding up the true cost of meeting. “Companies could be much more productive and profitable if everyone were just a bit more aware and intentional about it.” – CEO of VoloMetrix, Ryan Fuller. Take a look at the ways where your company can save money as well as conduct better meetings in your workplace:
1. Establish a Meeting Time Budget
‘By adding up the total number of hours that you and your team spend in meetings every week and aiming to reduce that time by 10% or 20%."It forces you to really think about which meetings you could cut out altogether.” Some VoloMetrix clients have taken what Fuller calls “extreme measures” to enforce time limits, like using conference lines that cut off at a preset time, or conference room doors that lock at the precise moment a meeting begins, so that latecomers are shut out. “You usually don’t need to go that far” to keep the time suck to a minimum, he says. “Just keep reminding people who stretch the limits that they need to do better next time.”
2. Avoid time fragmentation
At lots of companies, meetings are scheduled with 30 or 60-minute blocks of time between them, but Fuller points to reams of research showing that it takes people at least 15 minutes to regain focus after an interruption, and “it’s difficult to be productive when you have less than an hour until your next meeting.”
Whenever possible, he suggests, schedule meetings back-to-back, so that everyone gets a big block of uninterrupted time each day to concentrate on their actual work.’
3. Make Sure You Need a Meeting
‘Once you’ve developed your meeting plan, ensure that a meeting is the appropriate vehicle for accomplishing the set goals. To schedule and hold a meeting is expensive when you account for the time of the people attending. So, make efforts to determine that a meeting is the best opportunity to solve the problem, improve the process, or make an ongoing plan.
You may find that you can accomplish the meeting goals with an email discussion or by distributing and requesting information through the company newsletter. Make sure the meeting is needed and not just convenient for you – you’ll get better results from attendees.’
Do you have any ways you implement in your team meetings that makes it effective? What are some of the issues that tend to occur during meetings that should be addressed?
I would love to hear your thoughts!