Here’s the reality of our new remote world: We probably still spend too much time in meetings. Each year since 2000, the amount of time we spend in meetings has increased by 8 to 10%. But one of the reasons we like working remotely is that we’re not involved in office politics or unnecessary watercooler chats. So, why are we still putting up with inefficient meetings either on-site or on a video conference? Is there a way to make your meetings clearer and more concise?
You bet there is.
Are We Meeting Too Much?
The data shows we’re still spending our days in meetings. In 2019, employees reported:
- 41% said their average meeting was between 30 minutes to one hour.
- 29% said their meetings were 16 to 30 minutes on average.
- The remaining 13% reported an average meeting time of 61 to 90 minutes.
Now take these numbers and apply them to the volume of meetings we’re having:
- 8 meetings weekly on average.
- 10 meetings weekly for junior staffers.
- 12 meetings weekly for executive managers.
- 17 meetings weekly for VP level and above.
According to this data, 47% of these employees say these meetings waste time and 45% said they felt overwhelmed by all their meetings. Clearly, we’re doing something wrong.
Can we Make Our Meetings More Efficient?
The key to concise, efficient meetings in the New Year is communication. Start by asking questions like: Is this meeting really necessary?
- What are the goals of your meeting?
- Is this type of collaboration necessary to meet my (or my team) goals?
- Is everyone in this meeting necessary to meet our goals?
Even when your call is on Zoom, make sure you have an agenda for your meetings. Agendas are still important for a more productive meeting. Send it to your meeting attendees in advance to help people prepare. Also, try to keep your meetings to 30- or 45-minute increments. Anything more and you run the risk of losing your audience. If the meeting needs to run longer (and this should be rare), add in bio breaks or at least time to decompress.
You can also make each meeting more efficient if you take a break right before it to refocus your mind. When the 15-minute meeting reminder appears, stop what you’re doing and take a walk around. Drink some water. Definitely get out of your chair. Go outside. Take a little decompression time in between activities not only to refresh your body but also your mind. This will allow you to go into your meeting with less distractions and a more efficient frame of mind.
Another way to make your meetings more efficient this year is to give yourself a fresh start at a new company. That’s where PrideStaff Thousand Oaks can help. Call on us when you’re ready to make a change in your career.