Meetings make the corporate world go around, so what happens if you can’t find a room to hold one in? Or if the facilities just aren’t up to scratch? The room you are in can have a huge impact on everyone’s creativity and motivation, so getting your office meeting spaces right is crucial if you want to ensure productive get-togethers.
Before planning your meeting rooms, take time out to consider why you hold meetings, how often and for how many participants. Do you have to host or entertain external visitors, or provide regular catering in your meetings? Don’t forget to think about smaller, ad hoc requirements as well as larger conferences or formal agendas. Quiet places should be easily accessible from the office for small, informal discussions.
The right design
Take plenty of time to plan and execute the design of your meeting rooms. Pick calming, productive colours for the walls and furniture. Consider adding some inspirational decorations, but don’t go overboard and keep the vibe professional. When choosing tables and chairs, make sure they are comfortable to use for long periods of time and that they are ergonomically suitable to prevent injury. Don’t let cutting edge design overpower practicality.
The right tools
Make sure you equip your meeting rooms with the most appropriate tools to do the job. This could include phones and video conferencing facilities, as well as presentation and AV equipment and plenty of power sockets and USB ports. If you are starting from scratch, people appreciate plenty of power sockets for plugging in laptops and charging points for mobile devices.
As open plan offices continue to be a popular layout option, so the need for private rooms remains. Many business conversations will require a greater or lesser degree of confidentiality, so smaller meeting spaces with access to a closed door and a phone are very important to include in any new design. This kind of space works especially well for client contract negotiations and employee performance appraisals
Dress to impress
If you have space and resources, it is a nice idea to allocate a one or two meeting spaces for external visitors only. This offers a great opportunity to dress the room to match your corporate branding and to add a touch of luxury and class. You could invest in some artwork for the walls, or bring in a display case for any awards the organisation may have won. Locate this space as close to the main reception as you can to make your visitors’ access to it as easy as possible.
Once you have decided where your meeting rooms are going to be, whom they are going to be aimed at and how many you are going to create, think about how people are going to book them. There are all kinds of options, from installing high-the online systems to entrusting a capable administrator with a paper diary. However you decide to do it, the process must be straightforward and leave no room for double bookings or errors.