You Need To Cut Down On Business Meetings, Here's How (And Why!)
In the past, companies would hold business meetings almost every day. You’d gather your employees, talk about the goals for the day, then disperse. Nowadays, meetings are no longer as effective as they once were. They used to be the best way to keep everyone on the same page and ensure you were all working towards the same goals. Now, you could probably benefit from cutting down on the number of meetings you host!
Why do you need to cut down on business meetings?
I know what you’re thinking; what’s so bad about business meetings?
Well, it’s not so much that they’re ‘bad’ it’s more than they’re just ineffective. The purpose of business meetings is to provide your employees with individual bits of information. These days, you have better, more productive, ways of doing that.
Think about the time it takes to go through a meeting. You have to call everyone into the meeting room, wait for everyone to settle down, then proceed with your speech. It wastes valuable office time that could be spent focusing on other things. Who knows, while you’re sat there holding a meeting, someone might miss out on a strong lead.
So, to run a more productive and efficient business, you should keep meetings out of your regular schedule. A monthly meeting is as frequent as you need, but you could even have fewer than that.
How do you cut down on business meetings?
You’ve seen the why, but what about the how? Obviously, if you eradicate meetings, then you will miss out on something. You can’t just get rid of them without having alternatives in place. Your employees need information, and here are some ways you can provide it without needing to call an interview:
Send regular emails
Emailing is the easiest way to cut down on business meetings. Instead of a Monday morning meeting, you can send a Monday morning email. In the email, you summarise everything you’d talk about in your meeting. Display the goals for the week, make sure everyone is up to speed, and provide instructions to your team. They can read this on their way to work, or while they eat breakfast, so everyone can come in and get started right away.
Send out presentations
Some business meetings are longer than others as you have a lot of information to give. This might come in the form of a presentation that you’ve created to display financial data, customer feedback, or whatever. Instead of calling a meeting, you could just send the presentation by email. It’s so simple, and you can use Beautiful.AI to create epic slides within minutes, which helps you save even more time. Ensure that they understand what’s on each slide and gain all the information they need. One idea is to include something towards the end of the presentation that says ‘send me an email with the word (insert any random word here), so I know you’ve read the presentation.’ Then, you’ll know who actually read it and who just lied about it!
The benefit of this is that you can send the presentations after work and get them to read it before they come in the next day - or by a specific date. So, you don’t eat into work time; they can read the presentation at home whenever they want.
Use collaboration software
Modern technology has given us so many tools that help our daily business practices. Collaboration software refers to any application that lots of people can use at once, in different locations. A basic example of this is Google Sheets; a web-based spreadsheets app that your team can all contribute to. If you make an update to a spreadsheet, someone else can go into the same one and make their own adjustments. There are so many applications out there like this, and they reduce the need for meetings as you can collaborate while you work.
Think about it, your different teams don’t need to attend meetings to know what everyone’s doing. Collaboration software means everyone can see their goals, they can see the parts other teams are playing, and it all works seamlessly.
Take advantage of instant messaging
We really take things like instant messaging for granted. You’ve got the ability to send and receive messages in a flash. Not only that, but you can create groups, so multiple people can converse in the same way. This is perfect for cutting down on meetings as you can message people individually, or message groups of people all at once. So, everyone gets the information they need, as soon as they need it.
Go old-school with noticeboards
You don’t have to use technology to cut down on meetings, you can use old fashioned ideas too. A classic noticeboard can eliminate the need for so many internal meetings. Post updates to the board, so people see visual representations of the targets for this week. Ensure the board is in clear view of the whole office, so it works as motivation as well. If people see their goals, then they’ll work harder to reach them.
Conclusion: Business meetings aren’t essential
Ask yourself; do you really need to hold a meeting? For me, internal business meetings have lost their place in the world. They’re only necessary a few times a year, just to provide feedback and praise to your employees, or to make big announcements. External meetings - with clients, shareholders, etc. - still have their place. That’s an essential thing to point out; this whole article has been about meetings happening within your business between you and your employees.
Generally speaking, internal meetings waste too much time and don’t provide you with any benefits. Especially when you look at all the things you can do instead of holding a meeting. Save time, improve communications, and keep your employees happy by not dragging them away from their work every day! Try some of the ideas above if you’re keen to reduce the number of meetings your company holds throughout each week.