Meeting Spaces – Large or Small?
January 7, 2020
One of the bigger challenges in modern office design is planning appropriate meeting spaces. While traditional conference rooms still make sense for some businesses, they often sit empty, wasting valuable and expensive space. Even when a conference room is in use, you’ll often see only two or three people around a table that seats a dozen or more. In fact, a recent European study notes that 78% of meetings involve four or fewer people.
Other businesses have the opposite problem, with conference rooms in high demand and short supply. When twelve people are kept waiting because three others are using the space, sparks are sure to fly. This issue has been heightened by the increasing use of open office plans. While the open office has many benefits, it tends to send employees looking for any type of privacy, including hogging the whole conference room to make private phone calls.
As with many other issues in office design, the solution comes in the form of flexible design. This can take a variety of forms, from small glass-enclosed pods designed to seat two or three workers, to a full-size room that can be reconfigured with moveable walls.
The former is frequently a part of a successful open office design. One or more small privacy booths, or pods, can be deployed so a few can gather without taking the big conference room out of circulation. There are even single-person pods that allow a team member to make a sensitive phone call or to work in relative quiet when the task demands it.
And a flexible conference room can allow multiple teams to meet simultaneously without disturbing each other, a far more efficient use of space. When the full room is required, partitions are removed and everyone can gather.
Obviously, dividing a conference room requires some consideration regarding the furniture … the traditional single long table won’t work. The simple solution is modular furniture, with tables that can be used individually or combined into a larger arrangement to accommodate bigger meetings.
Questions about getting the most out of your meeting spaces? Contact Office Images.