Meeting Behavior A Peek Behind the Curtain

Professionals attend meetings regularly

Fifty-one percent (51%) of those questioned responded that they attended more than 3 meetings a week and 33% responded that they attended a lot more than 10 meetings weekly. That is a LOT of meetings. Considering that most of us have jobs where meetings make only a portion of our required activities, people spend a lot of time in conference/huddle rooms.

The takeaway is that meetings are a significant component of conducting business and present a huge opportunity to improve organizational and operational productivity and output. If we – the AV market – can help businesses conduct their meetings more efficiently and effectively, we will be helping them in a way that will make a huge impact.

Technical issues kill meeting productivity

Have you ever been in a meeting that couldn’t start because the presenter couldn’t get their presentation up on the projector? It’s not a new story. In fact, 41% of respondents reported technical issues sharing to a display in over half of the meetings they attended. This is very telling; even with all of the advancements in AV technology, nearly fifty percent of meetings have some sort of issue with technology. This hampers the natural flow of info and collaborative processes in those meetings, creating inefficiency and negatively influencing productivity through longer-than-necessary meeting times.

Lack of participation and engagement is a challenge for productivity

Almost half of survey respondents (44.8%) indicated that getting conference participants to engage and participate was the most common challenge of meetings they attended. Additionally, 44.2% of responders felt that only half of the meetings they attended were productive/effective.

These responses are likely related and paint a clear picture about what is going on in our meetings. Attendees do not feel that meetings are as successful as they should end up being based on the level of participation of these attending.

We have all had the experience of sitting through a gathering which is wholly controlled by one-two people, where the rest of those attending are more or less just observers instead of participants. And unless the meeting presenters are REALLY interesting, it’s hard to stay focused. These sort of scenarios play out every day in the workplace and are counterproductive to the collaborative process, which is likely connected to the fact that just over fifty percent of survey responses we collected indicated that meetings were productive more than 50% of the time.

The best meetings are all based in content sharing

We found that 43% felt the most helpful way to facilitate productive/effective meetings is for content material to be shared by multiple people in a screen simultaneously. Second up, 33% of respondents reported faster meeting start times.

An astounding amount of responses (98.1%) indicated that they found it valuable when articles was shared with the group via a display in the room. The most popular types of content to share via a display were images/images (61.9%), PDF paperwork (46.4%), and MS Office applications (45.2%). Many of us are visual learners. As a consequence of bringing many different skillsets collectively in a room, having articles which is shareable and viewable for the group is usually vital to the flow of details in the collaboration process.

Based on the results of this survey, we have been able to determine what hasn’t proved helpful during the past and what challenges companies face the AV sector as it strives to better serve it its customers. So what can be said about the current technology environment that we are in? Where can we read between the lines and find opportunities that aren’t obvious?

We’ve chosen to think outside of the container in analyzing our recent survey. Another option we recommend is definitely to investigate non-industry specific trends in technology to try and get a gauge what customers’ needs are now and what they will evolve to in the future.

Meetings are going mobile

BYOD is a hot term right now. Everyone from IT bloggers to school administrators to political statistics (wink, wink Hillary Clinton) can be tied to the tendency of mobile devices being frequently used in classrooms, meeting rooms, huddle rooms… you name it. A large portion of us are linked with our cellular devices, so it should come as no surprise that we’ve arrive to expect these devices to be used as a medium for accessing content at work as much as inside our social lives.

Our recent study substantiates this craze: In 2012 we conducted a survey in which we asked what items people typically bring into meetings them. We asked a similar question in 2015. By comparing the answers it is easy to interpret the results and relate them to the styles we see have been seeing in technology.

In 2012, 78.7% responded that they would typically provide pen and paper into meetings. In 2015, this percentage went down drastically to just 19.8%. In 2012, the number of Android tablets brought to meetings was 8.7%. In 2015, our results show the unit a lot more than tripling in reputation (25.6%). We saw boosts among all wireless devices, regardless of type, manufacturer, and operating system.

These trends reflect a monumental shift in our behavior with regard to mobile computing, and it’s a shift that organizations ought to plan for, because it doesn’t look like it’s going to change any time soon.

Most meetings are not BYOD friendly… yet

Unfortunately, only four percent (4%) of respondents answered that the majority of their meetings centered on shared content material support that articles getting shared wirelessly. So most content-structured meetings still don’t support cellular content sharing, but rather they likely (still) depend on the video cable and/or the thumb get.. This indicates a gap between user behavior (the mobility/BYOD development) and organizational support/infrastructure. In-room wireless collaboration technology either has not yet been deployed in these cases or is not however considered a viable option by decision makers for posting content material in these conference spaces. So it’s clear that the cellular collaboration market is still maturing, and also the solutions. However in this case, a study response that seems ‘negative’ on the surface still provides positive implications.

It’s promising that the vast majority of survey responses reflect an inherent need for wireless collaboration products, and meeting goers seem to understand the value of content-based BYOD collaboration, even if the majority of decision-makers at the organizational level haven’t gotten behind it yet. When there is strong consumer demand for a technology, agencies usually eventually fall in line. But the organizations which will benefit the most are those that recognize the trend and act quickly to put into action solutions, closing the gap between behavior and infrastructure support before it becomes a chasm of productivity.

Mersive is a leading provider of wi-fi media streaming and collaboration software for corporate, education, and government markets. Mersive Solstice software program products allow any number of users to simultaneously stream articles from computers, tablets, and mobile phones to any display – wirelessly from their very own devices using their existing network. Solstice facilitates collaboration among knowledge workers to foster engagement, facilitate decision-making, and improve efficiency in meeting spaces and classrooms.