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Ghost and Zombie Meetings: The Monsters Eating Company Productivity

Darkness falls across the land… The meeting hour is close at hand. Employees crawl in search of rooms but cannot find one… to their doom…

Sound familiar?

The modern workspace is evolving faster than ever before, and with this comes not only a demand from employees for better meeting rooms, but better availability — sometimes at a moment’s notice. Yet with this need for increased efficiency, sometimes the rooms themselves can fall into a graveyard of their own where they become the prey of meetings long-thought dead that aren’t quite as gone as they may seem.

At Teem, we refer to these as Ghost and Zombie meetings. And they can be truly scary.

 

 

What Are Ghost Meetings?

Ghost meetings are single meetings that are scheduled and then go completely unattended but leaves the meeting room unavailable. This could be a meeting that was scheduled “just in case” and ended up not happening, or maybe it’s a meeting that was scheduled but ended up being taken care of over Google Hangouts, email or in the hallway.

30% of scheduled meetings go unattended and live as Ghost Meetings, with not a single member on the meeting guest list showing up. While these meetings may seem harmless, they haunt company shared calendars and prevent other employees from scheduling rooms for important meetings, especially meetings that need to happen at a moment’s notice.

What Are Zombie Meetings?

Zombie Meetings are meetings that are recurring on your company’s calendar, but serve no purpose and no one ever attends. This meeting could be one scheduled between employees that are no longer with your company or simply a meeting that was once scheduled and is now forgotten. These meetings rises from the dead at their scheduled time and consume two of your company’s most valuable resources: time and resources, namely conference rooms. Gone unnoticed, these meetings remain scheduled for as long as they were set to last — potentially forever.

Zombie Meetings aren’t always the result of past employees. Sometimes they can be the result of a well-intentioned group whose meetings started out effective, but over time they began to become less and less so. Or perhaps a well-intentioned employee scheduled a room with the “just in case” mentality, only to end up not needing that room. It’s not that employees are intentionally scheduling conference rooms to create headaches for others; their actions are simply a result of playing it safe.

Eventually one by one, meetings such as these become a thing of the past. To all, that is, except the shared company calendar.

How Zombie Meetings Eat Productivity Alive

Ignoring Zombie Meetings can be dangerous. One recurring meeting can dominate a conference room for weeks, months, or even years until detected. Even then, eradicating the zombie can prove difficult as some platforms do not allow those not invited to the meeting to delete or alter the meeting schedule.

As they take up space within your company’s shared calendar and in your company’s meeting rooms, Zombie Meetings can infect your company in other ways:

  1. Employee Frustration: As Zombie Meetings consume valuable time in your company’s conference rooms, other employees are unable to book the right space for their meetings.
  2. Over-planning: As Zombie Meetings recur it skews workspace data, causing businesses to plan for more space than they actually need.
  3. Delayed Collaboration and Productivity: Keeping driven employees out of meeting rooms, Zombie Meetings can force employees to postpone collaboration and meetings.

While 30% of all meetings in a company go completely unattended, 20% of these meetings are Zombie Meetings, rising from the dead week after week and month after month, oftentimes going completely unnoticed.

While missing a meeting is generally harmless, according to proprietary data from Teem, nearly 30 hours per room, per month are completely wasted with meeting rooms that are scheduled and not even used for the meeting scheduled for in the first place. This is a significant waste of both time and space resources within the company.

It’s time to wrangle the undead for good and get your business’s life back.

Teem: The Undead (Meeting) Hunter

It’s an age-old question at this point: what would be your ideal weapon in the zombie apocalypse? There’s plenty of great options for taking out real zombies, but when it comes to the zombie meeting apocalypse, there’s only one option: Teem.

With seamless integrations with your business’s already existing shared calendar, Teem meeting room scheduling software and digital display apps prepare you from the start with great defenses against these undead conference room grabbers and helps you kill them before they reach pandemic status. Using check-in on the meeting room display app, you can make sure that the only bodies filling up seats in your conference rooms are warm bodies.

Use Check-In to Put Ghost Meetings to Rest

Ghost Meetings are more common than we like to admit. Remember, 30% of meetings end up dying and becoming the feared Ghost Meeting. With Teem Check-in, you can put these Ghost Meetings to rest for good. Watch the video below to see how Check-in works.

 

When a meeting room is scheduled, the Teem digital display app begins a countdown with a duration designated by your company’s Teem admin. After that time limit is reached, if no one has checked into the meeting room, Teem stops the Ghost Meeting in its tracks and makes the meeting room available again to employees to schedule for that meeting’s time frame.

How Teem Takes Out Zombie Meetings For Good

Teem Zombie Hunter monitors meeting attendance to recognize which meetings are beginning to turn into zombies and proactively finishes them off before they can reach pandemic status. Teem also provides you with insights to see which meetings have already received warnings and which ones have been taken care of.

Let’s look at how the Zombie Hunter feature worked for Shaun and his recurring meeting in the conference room, “The Winchester Tavern”:

  1. Shaun needs to collaborate with Ed and Liz bi-weekly to strategize for a client. Knowing that this meeting needs to happen every other week, Shaun schedules the meeting room, “The Winchester Tavern”, every other Wednesday at 2:00 pm.
  2. After 6 weeks, the client ends up canceling their account with the Shaun’s company and the strategy meetings become obsolete, but Shaun forgets to cancel the meeting.
  3. As the bi-weekly meeting comes up the following Wednesday, the team doesn’t gather in “The Winchester Tavern” for their 2:00 pm time slot on Wednesday.
  4. After Shaun gets an automated email from the Teem admin letting him know that his scheduled meeting went without any check-ins on the Teem display app outside of “The Winchester Tavern” and he is asked if the meeting is still to remain on the schedule.
  5. After a set amount of scheduled meetings are missed by Shaun’s team in “The Winchester Tavern”, the room is automatically unassigned from the recurring meeting and the Zombie Meeting is effectively taken out.

End the Long Night of Ghost and Zombie Meetings

At Teem, we know that there are a myriad of problems that your business can run into when it comes to conference room and workspace management. Managing your workspace through space scheduling, visitor management, wayfinding, and workplace analytics can help finish off not just the Ghost and Zombies that are plaguing your meeting rooms, but also take care of the many other issues that your employees run into.

Conference room resources may continue to be constrained, but with Zombie Meetings and their contagious bite being eradicated from your office, your company will start to see positive results for employee morale and productivity. And once “The Meeting Dead” have been removed, you’ll be quite surprised at how alive things start to look.

Learn more about Zombie Meetings and how Teem is giving you the tools to finish them off with our Zombie Meeting webinar! Or contact us today to request a Teem demo and see how Teem can help your business come alive!

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