The negative effects of sitting down for long periods has become common knowledge in offices over recent years. To counter concerns, ergonomic changes by HR professionals and office managers have led the way in encouraging employees to remove themselves from their desks. Here, Mark Brown, Owner of Lismark Office Products, discusses the benefits of standing meetings.
Traditionally, meetings have always been sat around a standard desk-height meeting table. However, those within the office furniture industry, have seen a huge increase in the popularity of high meeting tables, those used whilst sitting on stools or even standing. It seems that businesses are starting to realise the benefits associated with standing meetings.
The introduction of standing meetings, in particular, has provided offices with the added bonus of increased productivity.
Benefits of standing meetings
Increased productivity: Standing meetings have been shown to be 33 per cent shorter than sitting meetings, and usually take no longer than 15 to 20 minutes. The quicker nature of a standing meeting gives staff more time to complete other projects and start work on the outcomes of the meeting.
Fewer distractions: There is no chance during a standing meeting for staff members to take a quick peek at their mobile, tablet or laptop to check for emails and messages. With fewer opportunities for distractions, staff are more engaged.
Health benefits: A standing meeting can burn up to 50 per cent more calories than a sitting meeting. Compared to sitting in a chair, standing allows for improved blood circulation, oxygen flow, better posture and muscle engagement, all of which can keep you more alert and lead to better creative thinking. Just by using meeting time to stand, this can provide the right healthy balance between standing up and sitting down during a day.
Tips for a standing meeting
Decide on the subjects for the meeting and let your colleagues know in advance. You should be having a meeting just for the sake of it. If it’s not necessary, cancel it.
Before the meeting, let the participants that you will be standing and list the reasons and benefits of why you are doing so. That way, no-one is surprised during the first session.
Keep the meeting short, ideally no longer than 15-20 minutes.
Pick a space for the meeting where chairs can be pushed to the side. However, do provide chairs for people that wish to use them.
Give everyone a chance to talk. Everyone needs to share their information as concisely as possible – there’s not enough time to have one person just talk at everyone.
Set up an easel and flipchart if necessary.
Ask someone to take notes to be distributed via mail after the meeting if required.
Furniture ideas for standing meetings
If you like the idea of a standing meeting with the convenience of a table to take notes, use laptops for presentations, it’s well worth considering a high meeting table.
With a top height of 1050 mm, high meeting tables are perfect for creating a relaxed vibe in your meeting space. The table is flexible in that it can be used by either sitting on high stools or standing. And so, the table becomes multi-purpose, able to be used for standing meetings and for employees to relaxing over coffee.