Business owners and professionals can come together on at least one idea about meetings: While nobody loves to take them, everybody agrees that face-to-face time is a key value to the conference-room setting for meetings. Companies are increasingly looking for effective ways to provide that face-to-face opportunity–even when one of those faces is far apart from the other.
Indeed, the circumstances around “face time” are changing.
A new Blue Jeans Network survey shows that while 71% of polled professionals believe they’ve lost a business deal because their personal contact with a client or partner was replaced by conference calls and all-audio environments, some 30% are now using online tools to create video meetings that can in turn replace the physical conference room.
“This new way to collaborate means that bad weather, budget cuts, holidays and a geographically scattered team are no longer threats to business productivity,” said Stu Aaron, chief commercial officer at Blue Jeans. “You can easily conduct face-to-face meetings with nearly any browser-based device — from any location.”
The Blue Jeans Network survey offers additional insight into the state of the modern meeting and the changes business conferences will undergo in 2014.
Meeting Modern: Trends and Technology
A number of trends are affecting the meeting milieu.
- In 2013, winter storms resulted in more meetings rather than fewer–some 20% more. Meetings simply became online conferences instead of in-office meet-ups.
- One-third of all meetings now include participants who are appearing via mobile devices. New York holds the title for most mobile meeters, with San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Houston close behind.
- Mobile is driving a change in meeting times, as well. Three times the conferences via mobile devices are now happening at 7 a.m. versus 8 a.m., or at 6 p.m. instead of 5 p.m.
- Meetings on Saturdays and Sundays declined by more than one-third in the last half of 2013–from one in 10 meetings occurring on the weekend to just one in 15. Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the most popular meeting days of the week.
- The traditional lunch hour is also improving, at least in terms of how many times meetings intrude upon it. The polls shows a 20% dip in conferences scheduled between 12 noon and 1 p.m.
The survey also revealed another interesting statistic: While 41% of meetings begin on time, the survey stated, CEOs, CTOs, and other C-level execs typically arrive after everyone else.
The more things change, the more they stay the same.