Weekly Meetings Don't Necessarily Improve Office Productivity

Amy Winter
|
Posted: May 13, 2009 12:01 AM

Employees could be given a break from reoccurring office meetings. When it comes to weekly gatherings, 45 percent of executives say their employees would maintain better productivity if these meetings were eliminated, according to a survey by OfficeTeam, a staffing service that questioned 150 executives.

Forty-six percent of managers say there wouldn't be a change in workers if meetings occurred less often. If weekly gatherings stopped at the office, only 7 percent of managers expect a reduction in employee efficiency.

"Businesses are operating with lean teams, which implies more people are stretched for time," says Robert Hosking, executive director. "Sometimes meetings outlive their original purpose, so professionals should carefully consider whether one is warranted or if there's a more efficient way to share the information."

When asked what percentage of meetings seemed pointless, the average response from managers was 28 percent.

"The adage, 'Be brief, be brilliant, be gone,' rings particularly true in the workplace right now. Meeting organizers and participants both play a role in keeping these gatherings in check," adds Hosking.

OfficeTeam provides tips that can help you determine if your office gatherings are wasting time:

-- Features a long agenda. Try planning smaller, more focused meetings, rather than one long and unorganized gathering.

-- Goes for than an hour long. Most employees won't be able to focus for over an hour. Keep meetings under 60 minutes if possible. Provide snacks or interactive parts to maintain attention.

-- Has an endless attendee list. Make sure all participants are needed in the meeting. Don't invite everyone just as a sign of courtesy.

-- Includes an in-depth PowerPoint presentation. Share the visuals and information before the meeting. Use the group time to answer questions, hear suggestions or provide the most important details.

-- Becomes a routine for workers. Just because it happens every week doesn't mean the gathering is essential for the business.

For more information, visit www.officeteam.com.

DIFFICULT SUMMER JOB MARKET

As graduation time approaches, the struggle to find summer jobs begins in a tough economy. When compared to last year, a similar amount of employers will be looking for seasonal employees, but this year's grads will be competing with more unemployed workers.

Good news for seasonal workers: 77 percent of employers plan to offer the same amount of pay as last year, according to a CareerBuilder.com survey that questioned at least 2,500 employers. Only 9 percent of managers will provide less money in wages. The majority (42 percent) of companies hope to pay summer employees $10 or more per hour, and 30 percent of managers plan to provide between $8 and $10 an hour.

When comparing industries, hospitality and retail intend to hire the highest number of summer workers. Other popular positions will be offered in: office support, customer service, research, landscape/maintenance, restaurant/food service, sales and construction/painting.

"Summer job-seekers face a bigger challenge this year than in years past, as the market is flooded with candidates looking for both full- and part-time positions," says Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources.

"The good news is that many traditional summer jobs are still available, but in this environment, it is essential that job-seekers differentiate themselves and demonstrate how their skills can have a positive impact on a business in a short amount of time."