In an office environment there are countless variables that can, in one way or another, impact upon the productivity and engagement of your workforce. Take business meetings for example; while undoubtedly necessary and at some times crucial, these gatherings can also be the root of many an issue if improperly managed.

Shockingly, a new survey carried out by Barco ClickShare has found that 30% of business professionals think most of their meetings are pointless, while nearly half (48%) of respondents in the UK admitted to having dozed off in a meeting.

The survey, which incorporated responses from 2,250 senior business professionals from companies in the UK, US, Germany, France and the UAE in order to thoroughly explore their meeting experiences in day-to-day working life, also found that nearly one-third of respondents globally see less than half of their meetings as useful. In fact, many are seen as completely pointless.

Another extremely common indication of disengagement and distraction during meeting is the act of checking emails and social media channels, to which 70% and 37% admitted to respectively.

“Presenters must ensure that the technology works and the room is set-up correctly for the audience,” advises Dr Peter Collett, the behavioural psychologist who led the experiment.” Starting on time and reducing interruptions will greatly increase success but using multimedia and injecting personality will ensure a great experience for all.”

Lieven Bertier, Head of Go to Market Strategy and Services Meeting Experience at Barco, also commented, “Once a meeting is underway, it’s reasonable to assume that engagement levels are governed by the quality of the speaker. However, our research identified that the success of a meeting is determined by a variety of different factors. These factors include having the right technology at the beginning of the meeting to ensure a seamless flow of information, controlling the meeting room environment such as the serving of food, meeting room layout, and disturbances caused by lateness and work device usage.

“In fact the study exposed the prominent role that food plays in engagement levels in meetings. Well over half of respondents admitted to attending meetings purely for the free food. While brain mapping showed that mood of attendees is enhanced by the presence of food, almost a third of business people surveyed said they were distracted by food in business meetings.”

Sam Bonson

Sam is an aspiring novelist with a passion for fantasy and crime thrillers. He is currently working as a content writer, journalist & editor as he continues to expand his horizons.
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