Oh, the afternoon meeting, the woe of many office workers around the world. Sometimes they are fine, but other times, it’s very clear that they are not always an effective use of your time. Despite this, there is still a heavy emphasis on meetings in the workplace, to the point where some employees feel that their time is being wasted and misused as a result—a premise that is supported by surveys and research.
Asana published their Anatomy of Work global index, a report that details the amount of time businesses spend on meetings and other activities deemed “work about work,” i.e. wasteful time. Meetings are often about work, and as such, actual work is not necessarily being done during them. This report highlights the feedback of 9,615 knowledge workers from the United States, the UK, Australia, France, Germany, and Japan, and you might be surprised by the results.
Or, maybe you aren’t, and you’re just looking for justification for your suspicions about how much work is really getting done in your meetings.
The workers surveyed indicate that, on average, 58% of their workdays are spent on “work about work,” with skilled work and strategic work sitting at a paltry 33% and 9%, respectively.
So, the question then becomes, what are you actually paying your employees to do: the work their job requires, or sitting in meetings getting nothing of value done?
You might not like to admit it—after all, there is good that can come from the conference room, if meetings are managed appropriately and used sparingly—but “work about work” will slowly kill productivity. Asana’s definition of “work about work” is any activity other than skilled work which you hire someone to do. For example, hiring a programmer to sit in endless meetings rather than develop something of value is sure to have them jonesing to get their hands on some code, and it’s also sure to hold your business back from leveraging resources to the best of your ability.
Here are some more specific numbers to consider:
Seems to us like that time could be put to better use. If you’re ready, why not give us a call?
Meetings are still a necessary evil in a lot of ways, and that reality is not going away, but you can make them more effective and more worthwhile for everyone involved by keeping them on-task and focused. The right collaboration tools can help you achieve this goal. To learn more, contact SCW today at (509) 534-1530.
About the author
Sam is a network engineer with a broad range of experience spanning more than 35 years. He wrote is first piece of code in 1979 and has been involved with the industry ever since. For the last 20 years, he has worked for SCW Consulting where he has embraced his passion for network technology and security.
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