Meeting Culture: What It Is and How to Improve It

According to a survey released by Clarizen and Harris Poll, the average American office employee spends more than 9 hours each week prepping for or attending meetings. It’s a huge portion of workers' time; unfortunately, it might not be productively spent. 

While everyone can agree that sometimes meetings aren’t their favorite pastime, they serve a purpose. They provide an environment where employees can gather, share ideas, and collaborate on projects, campaigns, and strategy. 

Many experts feel employee dissatisfaction isn’t about the meetings but the meeting culture. Is your meeting culture lacking? Here are some signs that it might not be as great as you want it to be:

  • Meeting attendees are disengaged. This may take the form of blatant cell phone use.

  • Meeting attendees are uncomfortable. Maybe they are rubbing their neck or constantly adjusting their position, trying to get comfortable in their chair.

  • Workers complain about how long meetings are. If your meetings last more than an hour, it may be time to reevaluate if that time is necessary.

  • Your meetings end without clear action points for each member to perform independently or in smaller teams.

If you think you need to improve your meeting culture, consider meeting time frames and meeting attendants. Ensure the time scheduled is appropriate and every participant is necessary. If meetings are too long and individuals see no benefit to attending, they will likely disengage quickly. An unfocused employee is distracting to others and decreases productivity if the unneeded employee is stuck in a meeting instead of working.

Outfitting any meeting or conference room with comfortable seating is essential, especially if you consistently hold longer meetings. Uncomfortable employees are less likely to be actively engaged in the conversation.


Another necessary component of positive meeting culture is to ensure that each meeting is useful for all. Creating informed action items for each attendee from the discussion can help make meetings more valuable for employees and the company.



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