Meetings need to be more fun, report argues

Events organisers should think of innovative ways to keep people entertained to prevent attendees’ minds from wandering, new research warns.

According to a study by electronics manufacturer Sharp, only half of people attending business meetings actually pay attention to what is going on, notes.

Some 56 per cent of those involved in the survey claimed they’d been part of an event where the speaker was so boring their minds wandered. Not only that, an additional 44 per cent said they’d even seen audience members fall asleep as a result of boring presentations.

Perhaps the biggest reason for this boredom is meeting length, as 61 per cent said most meetings go on for far too long. This was certainly the case for one in ten, who were so bored by what was happening they actually invented a reason to leave, claims.

Respondents weren’t just looking to raise complaints about conferences and events, but instead offered a few solutions. For example, 21 per cent said that the chance to ask questions would have kept their interest up for longer, but that they were not given the opportunity. With their interest then gone, 34 per cent then said they spent the rest of the presentations daydreaming.

These responses should certainly be heeded by event organisers, as meetings and conferences currently account for around 40 million office hours per week. As it stands, however, some 7.5 million of these are still deemed to be a waste of time.