Benefits of Off-Site Meetings

Category: Office Design

Benefits Off-Site Meetings

Meetings help your day-to-day business run smoothly but, they are also paramount in enabling big decisions to keep your business moving forward.

However, too frequently, meetings can become tedious and unproductive. Their frequency increases, but they often never produce the outcome you want. You can change this by encouraging more engagement and focus from your teams. Keeping things interesting for employees is key in keeping people engaged and productive.

Thinking about meetings and how they affect your staff and your business is an important step to help you break free from your normal meeting routine. Changing your perspective towards meetings takes a few easy steps. There are plenty of different spaces, technologies, agendas and activities you can implement to enhance your meetings. To make your life easier, we’ve pulled together some ways you can create more productive meetings and why off-site meetings are a positive change to implement within your business.

Change of Scenery

Taking some of your meetings off-site offers your employees a welcome change of scenery to their normal everyday environment. Off-site meetings give teams a fresh burst of energy to really focus on problem-solving. A survey in America showed that 63% of respondents find that off-site meetings are more productive than on-site meetings.

A new creative environment will encourage more creativity by giving your employees a chance to get away from their day-to-day environment, encouraging bolder, more out-there ideas. By taking your team out of their everyday setting it can give them, and you, a fresh perspective on old problems.

Changing the scenery is such a small alteration to day-to-day office life but it can have a drastic impact on how your colleagues think. You might even come up with a ground-breaking new direction.

Increased Productivity

An off-site meeting or conference often improves productivity by reducing the likelihood of workplace interruptions. According to Forbes, 51% of workers said they weren't engaged with 17% saying they were actively disengaged with their office environment.

Taking a meeting off-site implies real importance to attendees, so you can expect that the team will be more focused, and interruptions are less likely. The workplace distractions that affect meetings can take the form of colleagues interrupting when they need advice, a meeting room being double-booked, non-attendance or disruptions due to phone calls. With an off-site meeting, your team will be aware that a venue has been booked and a strict agenda is in place, so they will better understand how important the meeting is and the level of focus you are expecting from them.

An off-site meeting reduces distractions as it removes the meeting from the everyday environment, providing a more focused environment and improves the overall effectiveness of the meeting.

Improved Understanding

Off-site meetings allow employees to step away from the daily grind and ruminate over the bigger picture. That means it’s a great time to consider the big issues that are preventing the company from moving forward and growing. Off-site meetings are a great time to give your team a better understanding of the company’s overall positioning and strategy. Getting away from the business-as-usual also allows you to take a step back from the details and focus solely on the blockers, big ideas, big problems and big solutions. Your team will have the perfect opportunity to make more valuable contributions to the company’s long-term goals.

Having transparency of the company’s long-term plans is essential in keeping everyone motivated and in-line with the future plan. Focusing on the big picture also stops people becoming too wrapped up in very minor tasks and makes them feel a part of something bigger, and a really integral part of your team and your vision.

Encourages Communication

A different, perhaps more relaxed environment for your work meetings will encourage participation from all employees at all levels of seniority. An off-site meeting is the perfect time for the whole team to express their ideas. In a small start-up business like ours for example, receiving feedback from different departments is essential in ensuring we have a quality product that works for everyone. Getting the whole team involved in these meetings ensures that any potential problems are spotted early, preventing any one department from wasting their time on tasks that won’t take us in the right direction. Having all the teams in these meetings also ensures that everyone has a firm understanding of new developments, the overall direction of travel, and how each team plays its part.

This valuable insight from everyone ultimately prevents more mistakes and leads to more engagement, increase productivity and overall enjoyment.

Improve Relationships

An off-site meeting without the constraints of the normal working environment can make employees feel more relaxed leading to improved workplace relationships.

If you need to focus on relationship building or increased collaboration, why not include a short team building exercise in your next off-site meeting? They don’t have to fill your colleagues with dread but should be an invaluable opportunity to allow team members to appreciate each other in a new light, build existing relationships, create new ones and discover new talents, interests and abilities that would not have been revealed in routine meetings and conferences.

Ultimately the better your team know each other, the more effective they will be as a team.

Promote a new type of learning

An off-site meeting or conference allows you to vary your meeting style and try something new. A different environment with perhaps a bigger area allows you to promote interactive learning.

As previously mentioned, ice-breakers are a great activity to get everyone involved. But you could also introduce new ways of communicating perhaps through only communicating through actions or perhaps by organising a standing up meeting, or a meeting over a game of football or a brisk walk. Fun elements help colleagues build lasting relationships thus improving morale and improve teamwork, ultimately benefiting the business:

Video Learning is increasingly becoming the fun, quick and go-to way of learning new content. Video content is easy to leverage and promote via Facebook and YouTube. Video content allows you to get ideas over to your employees in a creative way, but you could also flip the concept on its head. Why not get your employees to create a video with new ideas or objectives for the business? Doing this off-site gives your employees a highly creative environment and a different channel of expression to explore.

The benefits of off-site meetings are clear. They’re a great way to enhance the normal working week, which may sometimes become repetitive. Offering a new environment allows your colleagues to gain a new perspective, gain more confidence and think of new ideas. Although we recognise that not every meeting can be held off-site, if you have a big problem you need to crack, a big idea you need to realise, or you just want more energy from your colleagues, off-site meetings are a great way to buck the trend.

HeadBox is the UK's only SaaS enabled online marketplace where you can instantly search, book and pay for inspiring meeting, off-site and event Spaces. Do you need an off-site event Space? Whether that’s an off-site meeting, or Space, here at HeadBox we have plenty of inspiring venues for your team.

Posted 24th July, 2018

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