Your boss has been barking a “move it” since forever now, so you’re more than convinced that some dogs have their day all 365 days a year. Finally, you can pay him back in the same coin. The Washington University helps you get back at the chief with that very exasperating phrase as a suggestion just when he announces the next boring meeting, thanks to a study that proves how on-the-go conferences score way higher than on-the-a** ones.
“You learn to sit at school; you learn to sit at work. What a meeting on the move (MOTM) really does, is get us active like we used to be when we were kids. We can learn then to bring activity back into our daily life, just like we learned to take it out,” explained Debra Haire-Joshu, researcher and director of the Obesity Prevention and Policy Research Center at the Brown School, WU, to the press in the West. We see if the findings fit fine and spell fun in the desi work scenario.
The study says a move-it meet can:
>> Add physical activity. Even if a meeting on the move is an employee’s only physical activity for the day, it is better than nothing.
>> Improve productivity. An MOTM can re-energise employees by getting the blood pumping.
>> Add a different perspective. Ideas or problems can look very different once you step out of office.
>> Build team spirit. Walking together helps employees bond over projects and light talk.
>> Help exercise beyond the workplace. These active meetings may encourage workers to exercise outside of work, as well.
>> Save costs. There is no need to pay for coffee or doughnuts.
>> Help you go green. Going for a walk leaves little to no carbon footprint.
>> Lead to an improved company wellness plan. These meetings can prove a valuable addition to a corporate wellness plan.
>> Lessen stress.
>> Save staff from chronic conditions like diabetes and migraines.
Recession doesn’t play spoilsport
Sanjay Chakravorty, Art and design pro, JWT
Since such meetings aren’t about extravagant outstation holidays, recession doesn’t affect them. We ideate and brainstorm even halfway through corporate cricket matches.
Achint Khare, Director, School of Symphony
My job’s all about teaching music, and terrace-top meets combined with some active jamming get us into the right mood for upping business.
Case study: Mithai mates who choose bowling over boardroom
Who: Web technologists at mithaimate.com, a pan-India sweets delivery outfit
How they do it, and score more: “Since we are an online entity, a laptop and a net connection is all we need to get on with work. So, we don’t have a brick and mortar office. We prefer doing it over coffee at book bars or even over bowling. This also helps us show our website to others around us and get offhand feedback, which can prove very helpful,” says Akhilesh Bali, founder member.
Mind your MOTM Feng Shui
Mohan Deep, Feng Shui master
“If you believe in this art, you should always ask your consultant what is best direction to sit in, what colour you must wear, and what time of the day is best suited for a good deal. Conference room Feng Shui won’t work in such a scenario, so these little things are what you must take care of. You will notice often that, business partners tend to delay offsite meets, only to get the clock to a favourable time,” says Feng Shui master Mohan Deep.
Things to keep in mind before shifting track
>> Keep the main agenda in view, else distraction will take over.
>> Make the affair as participative as possible.
>> Avoid a place without too much thoroughfare, visual value or ambient noise.
>> Don’t use such meetings to come tough on the team. The idea is relaxed output.
>> Don’t go OTT with the enjoying bit, it could turn out like a noisy classroom where no one’s doing their homework.
>> Stay clear of information overload and stuffing in too much work taking undue advantage isn’t justified.
>> Ask the staff to wear comfortable shoes and clothing.
>> Remember to follow up later on what was discussed.
Not meant for serious matters
Ashok Bhatt, Director, Mindshare HR Consultancy and Training
“People are generally hard-pressed for time, so there’s often no other option, and it’s okay to plan an informal meet. However, I wouldn’t approve of a casual meeting if the matter at hand is serious. In such a case, the setting needs to be formal. In terms of connecting, however, informal meetings in an informal environment, work better, since they make employees speak up without hesitation. In a formal meeting, protocols often bar unpalatable and uncomfortable issues from coming up. A meeting, in the end, is all about problem solving, and a fun execution does this well by breaking down walls of hierarchy and driving away hesitation. Spontaneity leads to better creativity.”