Time for better meetings

"Meeting culture in business is a cancerous tumor and Sweden is near the bottom in this regard."

So says Percy Barnevik in one interview with SvD Näringsliv some years ago. Is it a well-dramatic statement that does not agree with our organizations? Are only other businesses having ineffective meetings?

Curious about how much time we spend on meetings, I found sources who said that managers spend an average of 15-20 hours per week in meetings, employees a little less. The managers feel that 40-70% of the meeting time is a waste of time. Why? Is it the flock animal in us that still causes each of us to constantly seek each other out, or is it the special status of the meeting that makes us attracted?

Is it difficult to put a price tag on a meeting that means that the efficiency programs and cheese planes of businesses do not get to the meeting form? We are committed to goal management, process development and efficiency, but as a destructive termite ant we still have the meeting culture and it continues to undermine much of what we do well.

Most of us make careful choices when it comes to our leisure time. If we get a question to attend a concert, party or watch a match, we want to know more. Should we prepare something, how should we dress, what others will come? We do not just say yes and hope for the best. If we get the question whether we can help rebuild a friend's bathroom, we are careful to point out what we can and cannot do. Our time is too valuable and our skills are limited so we actively choose a lot from what we do.

Now is the year 2014. Shouldn't we be able to do something together to get out of that meeting room more often with a nice feeling of well-being? I know we can and in other contexts we are more capable and demand more from each other. Now I think it's time for us to improve meetings at work as well. I am convinced that we can all be much better and that a key is good preparation. In this way, we create the conditions for value-adding time together and achieve the desired results. As a conclusion, therefore, I would like to send you the question, what will be your next step in developing the meetings in your business?