According to recent MIT and University of Nebraska research, American workers may spend an average of six (rank-and-file) and as much as 23 (managers) hours a week in meetings, and a large chunk of this time is highly unproductive. Companies waste tens of billions of dollars a year paying employees to attend meetings over trivial issues that could be resolved at a lower level, or which lack any clear agenda for what they want to accomplish. Another source of waste is meetings that involve the presence of far more people than actually required, or which people attend as a matterr of habit rather than need.
- Studies show that employees and senior managers spend a considerable amount of working time in meetings which turn out to be ineffective.
- When meetings become the primary means of resolving minor issues, then it is a time to make a major change.
- If you are having meetings without a clear agenda, then those meetings are uncalled for.
“And U.S. employers pay a big cost for this, to the tune of around $37 billion annually. Your company probably doesn’t want to spend a fortune so employees can sit around a table drinking bad coffee and having unproductive conversations — so you’ll need to watch for signs that meetings are too numerous at your organization.”