How meetings can destroy business productivity

30 Nov, 2017

Meetings are unavoidable in business – whether to present to clients or internal discussions with your staff. can you optimise meeting times?

Let’s start by looking at the main problem with meetings: they’re  resource intensive.

Meetings take up a lot of time, which translates to costs to your company. Think about the time spent preparing and travelling. That’s before the meeting even starts.

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In addition, some meetings are completely unnecessary and could be dealt with over email or a telephone call.

Discussions can frequently hijack time as well. Often these trail off to similar topics that dont relate to the objective of the meeting. Other times, things that have already been discussed are repeated several times. People’s minds tend to wander during long discussions. They may give in to the temptation to check their emails, preventing them from being fully present for the meeting.

People’s minds tend to wander during long discussions, and they may give in to the temptation of checking their emails, preventing them from being fully present for the meeting.

Here are some tools that can reduce unproductive meetings:

  • Broadband fibre that provides reliable high speed, high capacity internet connectivity is a must. Affordable options will help ensure that your business is future proof.
  • Video conferencing platforms allow participants to use a mobile device, laptop or desktop computer. Meetings can be accessed through a simple click-to-connect link that’s unique to your meeting. Quality video is provided through a managed low bandwidth connection. This minimises data costs for mobile users and travel time.
  • Interactive whiteboards are perfect for meetings where information is analysed and modified during the discussion. This dynamic form of presentation will ensure meeting participants are more engaged, resulting in productive use of meeting times with actionable insights.

Here are five tips to more effective business discussions:

  1. Be prepared – Ensure that all participants are aware of the objective of the meeting beforehand and can prepare sufficiently. A short message about the topic and desired outcome when the meeting invite is sent is the first step. Follow this up with a summary of the major discussion points you’d like to cover in the meeting.
  2. Be exclusive – With the possible exception of creative brainstorms where more minds can spark exceptional ideas, invite only the people who are absolutely essential.
  3. Have an engaging presentation – Visuals are a great tool to support information. Include as many as you can to keep everyone engaged, and avoid simply reading what is on the presentation.
  4. Unplug – Unless you’re using your laptop or tablet during a presentation, turn it off. This will minimise disruptions and repetition.
  5. Use technology smartly – Telecoms may be an easy way to avoid an hour-long commute for a 30-minute discussion. But often people tend to tune out if they can’t hear or decipher what the person on the other end is saying.

If you’re ready to step up your meeting game, click here for a comprehensive assessment and recommendation from Nashua. It’s totally free – no strings attached.

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