Forget stuffy meeting rooms. Nowadays, a simple arrangement of tables and chairs isn’t enough to help your business thrive. The spaces in which you meet must keep pace with an ever-advancing technological world.
It’s time to invest in your office meeting spaces and create a hybrid workplace in line with the preference of 85% of employees.
To help you make the transition, we’ve gathered up some innovative meeting room ideas and inspiration.
Dos and don’ts for meeting room design
When you’re looking to transform a meeting room into a hub of creativity and productivity, a good place to start is the design. Ideally, you need a versatile, user-friendly space that’s purpose-built to accommodate in-person meetings, virtual meetings and hybrid meetings.
The dos for meeting room design
Consider the purpose of the meeting room carefully. What are the specific and individual needs of your business? And what does an office space which meets these needs look like?
Choose a well-thought-out design for the space that matches the overall vibe of your brand. The energy of a room is dictated by a thousand different factors, including lighting, flooring and furniture.
Lay things out deliberately. Position the cameras and meeting room furniture so that you will be fully visible to remote callers. Make sure cameras aren’t facing towards windows that will cause glare or pointing at the back of heads.
Incorporate technology at every stage of the design. Many businesses make the mistake of focusing too heavily on the design of a space without considering the technological requirements.
Minimise distractions in the room. Tend to squeaky chairs, replace loud air conditioning units and generally make the room feel like a fresh, open place to help people focus.
The don’ts for meeting room design
Skimp on the costs. If you try to pinch pennies too severely now, you’re likely to run into issues down the line with employee wellbeing. Lean on reliable, expert sources to create bespoke, incorporated solutions.
Underestimate or overestimate your needs. Office meeting spaces come in different sizes. It’s important to determine whether you’re looking for a four-person huddle room or an eight-person meeting room.
Overcrowd the meeting room with too much stuff. Overcrowding in any area of the workplace can lead to defensive behaviours and strain workplace relationships.
Make the space too one-note and generic. Adding curated elements of originality and excitement can create an inspiring environment. (More on this later.)
Ignore employee needs and preferences. If anyone knows best what will work for your company, it’s your employees.
“Office spaces have become much more concerned with the question of how to make employees as comfortable as possible at their workplace.
Be it colours, furniture or material, at the end of the day, they all aim at creating a space for the employee in which they can thrive, be happy or feel inspired and motivated. Personally, I am very fond of this development.”
So, what do you need in a meeting room?
Now we’ve addressed the design dos and don’ts, it’s time to share some critical meeting room ideas and inspiration...
1. Standardised, quality technology
To create a meeting room that operates smoothly for in-person, hybrid, and virtual meetings alike, you need professional, smart meeting room technology.
Quality of audio-visual experience matters. If you neglect the need for quality AV tech, you run the risk of Zoom fatigue and making the wrong impression on virtual clients.
Screen size is also a key factor. High-resolution projectors and larger screens will be much better placed to help you share detailed documents with your team in a readable, clear format.
2. Collaborative tools
Collaborative tech tools like interactive whiteboards can add a dynamic element to meetings, making idea generation sessions more intuitive and creative.
3. Conscious accommodations for hybrid meetings
Pandemic or no pandemic, many businesses will need to continue operating a flexible, hybrid model of working. The genie is out of the bottle now and things have changed.
For your meeting room to be truly future proof, it must be able to accommodate meetings of all kinds, across a wide variety of platforms, such as Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Cisco WebEx, Google Meet and more.
4. Comfortable, well-designed furniture
Middle managers are estimated to spend about 35% of their working day in meetings. The importance of durable, built-to-last ergonomic furniture providing extra support is priceless.
If you make the right investment, your meeting room table and chairs will last for many years to come. Get it wrong, or try to cut costs, and you’re likely to cost yourself more in the long-term.
5. Good acoustics
Although glass walls and smooth wooden floors might look sleek and professional, they don’t make for the best acoustic performance because hard surfaces reflect sound.
When you’re on video call after video call, the last thing you want is an echo. Invest in acoustic panelling, canvas artworks and soft furnishings to lessen the echo and improve the acoustics of the meeting room.
6. An easy booking system
Use room booking technologies like Evoko to simplify the process of reserving the meeting room. Employees will be able to immediately see whether the room is available or not and are more likely to make use of the space if it is.
7. Experience-improving extras
A majority of people in full-time work often drink coffee during the workday. Listen to the masses and add experience-improving extras like coffee machines to your meeting space.
Plants in meeting rooms are also a great idea, as they’ve been proven to increase happiness and productivity. Just make sure don’t buy any of the 10 worst indoor houseplants for people with allergies.
Take your meeting room to the next level
If you’re looking for some more dynamic, exciting suggestions to help elevate your office meeting room, check out our options via the online store.