We accept that meetings are a normal part of business life. They are necessary for communication, for directions and decision-making. Yet it seems we attend too many meetings. They run on too long and a growing consensus is that they are rather a waste of time. Does this describe your business? If so, you may need to think about how it conducts meetings. The meeting management skill is one of the soft skills for managers and decision makers.
You don’t want to stop holding meetings, but you do need to cut back and make them more efficient? Bookboon can help you achieve efficiency by helping you to improve your meeting skills.
The humble business meeting has come in for scrutiny in recent years. Nobody is saying that we shouldn’t hold them. Undoubtedly, they are necessary for exchanging information, informing team members, fostering teamwork and enabling communication.
However, business analysts, professional magazines, and even business leaders challenge whether it is necessary to have that many meetings. Far too often, the meeting management is poor, confusing and directionless. We are meeting too often and they are taking too long, going over the same ground. It appears more like a waste of time, effort and money.
What poor meeting management cost you: the facts and figures
According to reports, meetings cost business billions every year. The worst thing is that most of this money is lost on meetings that did not need to take place. And this trend is even getting worse.
In 2014, the biggest study of its kind found a number of concerning business trends.
- Employees at all levels spent 15% of their work time in official meetings.
- This figure has increased year on year since 2008.
- CEOs spend two days per week in meetings and a whole day managing communications, some of which relate to organising and scheduling meetings.
- Combined, top executives spend thousands of hours in meetings.
- Most meetings are scheduled without an agenda or time limit.
- For every five minutes that the meeting starts late, 8% of productivity are lost.
Some blame technology and the ease of setting one up for poor meeting management. As many businesses do not track the number of hours spent in meetings, it has become the largest drain on time. You’ve probably heard of fake work; now, many people at all levels list meetings as fake work. What can be done about it? Bookboon has a solution.
3 simple meeting tips to apply immediately
Significant complaints about poor meeting management include people who didn’t need to be there, too many tangents and they didn’t learn anything new. Clearly, meetings are now major obstacles to work. How do we begin to tackle the problem of meetings as fake work?
We offer and recommend the long-term solution offered below, but there are quick and simple tips you can put in place right now:
- Scrutinise whether each meeting is even necessary. Too much time is wasted on going over the same ground. Can the issue be solved with an email?
- Place a time limit including a prompt beginning and end time. Perhaps in some corporate cultures, standards have become too lax.
- Have a strict agenda. Focus on the decision-making and information sharing of the issue.
These three simple tips will help improve your meeting management skills. But your business needs further training to improve its meetings culture in the long run.
The Bookboon eLibrary Solution
Although the three tips above are helpful, they are just the start. Ultimately, you need to change your business practice around meetings through effective training.
Bookboon’s eLibrary Solution provides a wide range of eBooks to facilitate improvements in business meeting practices. With this course, you may learn how to hold a meeting in a manner that is both useful and succinct.
Bookboon’s eBooks can help deliver the results you require through a system of eLearning. The major benefit is that employees responsible for organising and holding meetings may study and learn in their own time.
Also, businesses that choose eLearning over classroom training report repeatedly that it is more effective, faster and cheaper.