We work hard at Wisembly to optimize business meetings. Practically every time we develop a new feature, we imagine a way to measure it. Indeed, it is key for us to have a detailed vision on a user’s or a team’s habits before we can give pertinent advise to run more productive and actionable meetings.
Our new product, Solid is the solution to 100% productive meetings ; you just synch it to your agenda and get access to the overview of your meetings habits (average meetings number, time spent, percentage of meetings organized, etc.).
It was quite obvious we had to take a look back at our own habits in meetings at Wisembly.
So when launching the very private beta within the team in December, the first thing we decided to do was to analyze a total year of meetings at Wisembly.
Here are the results when we compared all the team’s Google agendas, 2 months ago.
Last October, we offered a survey to 500 people to analyze their habits in meetings ; see the details just here. Guess what was the average number of meetings for these 500 per week? Six. To be honest, we thought it would have been higher…
It seems that the Wisembly Team is quite above average with 9 meetings per week.
30 people are working at Wisembly today, the startup has doubled it’s size within a year. As a co-founder, I believe that change in the team structure and the rapid growth of our company has definitely created some unnecessary meetings at some point.
Also, I have a few other reasons that explain the higher average number :
- Most salespeople will count their clients’ appointments as a “meeting” in their agenda.
- Salespeople, Marketing, and HR naturally have lots of meetings with external people, due to their core mission: help the business grow.
- The Product Team, Developers, and the Office Manager mostly make progress reports or project reviews, specific types of meetings: it would be interesting to record them differently in the future.
It was quite interesting for us to have a closer look at 2 pieces of data :
The “number of prepared meetings”
It is based on whether or not the agenda was sent to participants prior to the meeting. Only 33% of our meetings are actually prepared and we have immediately highlighted the point and asked everyone to make sure they upgrade that figure within a month!
Work expands to the time you schedule for it
Remember the Parkinson’s Law? Not so many people think about changing the duration by default of a meeting on Google Calendar (1 hour). And it has thus become a bad habit for many to run 1-hour meetings. It is important to fight this bad habit and adapt the timing to your meeting every time.
Last update: we have been using Solid for 2 months now, what has changed?
After 2 months of Solid’s use for the Wisembly Team, we can already see some interesting key facts:
Well-prepared meetings last only a minute longer than expected, whereas poorly prepared meetings last 9 minutes longer than expected.
Teams are now more careful to setting initial meeting lengths (take-away: forget the default time proposed by your agenda provider).
We’ve said it already, meetings are not dead, they simply lack process and monitoring. In just a few months, you can see how we can still advance and optimize certain numbers to be more productive.
Are you surprised about the results? Well, find out yourself: we’d be thrilled to count you among the community of Solid’s beta users. Also don’t hesitate to give us some feedback in the comments section!