Recent research shows that two-thirds of all meetings are pointless! Don’t let your boss and her/his teams waste time like this. Preparation is the golden path to productive meetings. Doodle provides a suite of calendar tools that save a lot of time for anyone who has to set up a lot of meetings.

We need better meetings!

Doodle State of Meetings Report 2019

We need meetings to make decisions, brainstorm, network and get teams aligned. Face to face are the most popular meetings, easily beating all other types, including modern methods such as instant messaging and video conferencing. However, meetings are eating up the time of busy professionals, the higher up the ladder, the more meetings one has. Two-thirds of all meetings are pointless, according to the Doodle State of Meetings Report 2019. That’s too much!

The biggest irritations during meetings are: Taking phone calls or typing, people interrupting, talking too long and not listening. Overall, bad behaviour and lack of focus.

Relevant people are missing from important meetings

Or conversely, there are too many people in the meeting, and this dilutes the focus.

We need better meetings!

This has a massive impact on our economy. Pointless meetings add up to over $541bn worth of wasted resources around the world in 2019. NB: this is only counting the salary, not the facility costs, travel expenses, and the loss of motivation!

About the State of Meetings Report: We commissioned a survey of total 6500 office workers and 20 in-depth interviews by Nielsen and Censuswide and investigated 19 million Doodle invites.

Executives and their assistants can make the change

And it gets even worse. While the average professional spends 3 hours a week in meetings, team leaders and middle management have 5 and more meetings a week. What about the bosses of the executive assistant! How many meetings do they have? The drain of bad meetings enormously impacts them, but fortunately, they’re also in a stronger position to do something about it.

That’s where you come in. Because it doesn’t have to be this way: We can have productive, well-organised meetings that benefit you, your boss, and your business!

How to organise better meetings: 6 questions

  • Is the meeting needed? Or could an email, or just a quick chat do it?
  • Are there goals established? Is it just networking, or does your boss want to make clear decisions in the meeting?
  • Is there an agenda? How much time is needed? How much time do you want to take away from the participants? Often even only 25 minutes can do just fine.
  • Do you have the right participants? Are the key people present? Can you invite fewer people? Did you get the confirmations or do you need to follow up?
  • Is the technology adequately set up? Will setting up the video conf system steal the first 5 minutes of the meeting? Is a powerpoint necessary or will it distract the audience?
  • Who is going to follow up? Is it needed that someone takes notes? Who makes sure that decisions and action points are clear and will be communicated?

Preparation is the key!

“The secret of a successful and time-efficient meeting is preparation. The agenda mustn’t be too long and should include the goals of the meeting, and specific detail on the subjects and time allocation.” Dr Sankalp Chaturvedi

Associate Professor of Organisational Behaviour and Leadership at Imperial College London

Whatever the meeting, Doodle has a tool to help

We need better meetings!

  • With the classic Doodle Groups, you suggest times, and the participants can indicate their availability in a visual grid, and you confirm the best option. It’s the solution for board meetings, team events, meetings with external partners; you name it.
  • Doodle 1:1 is the simple solution for 1:1 meetings. It’s the same principle as Doodle groups but with one fewer step. You suggest the times, the guest picks the preferred option, and both get a calendar invite directly.
  • Just recently launched, the Doodle Bot works within Slack, precisely where teams communicate and organise themselves.
  • We’re most proud of our Doodle Extensions that all feature our signature scheduling smarts. Our AI understands your calendar patterns and from the beginning only suggests times that you’ll accept. The future is already here, and it’s only just beginning.

Goodbye scheduling ping-pong: get Premium Doodle with an exclusive discount

Premium Doodle is the professional version of the world’s leading scheduling tool. Get in answer more quickly, send customised invites without ads, use the new pro features. Exclusively for the readers of Practically Perfect PA, we offer a 50% discount to our annual business subscription. Just send us an email before May 4, 2019.

We need better meetings!

Tilman Eberle presented this session at The Future Assistant 2019. If you would like to watch his session and 15 other sessions at our annual conference head over to The Future Assistant 2019 and download our on-demand recording for just £100. 

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