In some cases, businesses have the employees in their different departments meet on a regular basis in order to make sure everything is in order, people are handling their individual responsibilities, and any and all questions can be asked and hopefully answered.
In other instances, companies will rarely bring their employees together to meet, leaving lots of unanswered questions, and an atmosphere of uncertainty.
So, which road should your business take to best position itself for success?
In looking at the pros and cons of meetings, consider these two factors:
- Meetings should serve a purpose – If your various departments are getting a lot out of the meetings, there should be no reason to do away with them.
- Time is of the essence – If your employees feel like the time devoted to meetings could be better spent elsewhere, are you listening to them?
Here are two examples of companies and why there needs to be an understanding and system in place regarding meetings.
Company A – At this company, meetings are few and far between. The different departments essentially have no idea what each other is doing; hence there is little or no communication. When questions do arise as to who is working on what, there are oftentimes no responses and looks of utter confusion on the faces of employees. The bottom line is the workload is suffering and clients are taking notice of the lack of cohesion within the business.
Company B – At this company, meetings happen around the clock. Every time you turn around either you or another co-worker is being called into a meeting; hence it seems like there is less and less time to get the work done. The bottom line is the workload is suffering and clients are taking notice of backed up schedules.
As you can see in these two examples – there was one common theme – the workload being impacted.
One of the most important goals of any business is to meet its scheduled timelines. If the company’s products and/or services are often being delayed in reaching the client, what is to stop the customer from going elsewhere?
I have worked in both situations in 23 years as an employee with a handful of businesses.
I have seen employees that had no idea what the other one was doing because there was little or no communication going on, meaning meetings were about as rare as a Buffalo heat wave in January.
On the flip side, I have seen employees that were meeting constantly, then wondering why their work was stacked high to the ceiling. Perhaps instead of having so many meetings during the day, the head or heads of the company could have put that time to better use, say letting their employees do what they were hired to do in the first place — work.
Most people would probably agree that you need to find something in the middle of the road. Yes, your employees should meet from time to time, but not every other hour to the point of where they burn holes in the conference room rug.
At the end of the day, those that run the company should set the tone for how often their various departments meet during the work week.
If they’re smart, they will take input from the employees themselves to determine whether they are meeting just to meet.
In your work experiences, have you found meetings to be beneficial, just a part of the job, or a lot of hot air that ended up cutting into valuable work time?
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