Meetings are probably the most iconic office ritual of the last forty years. On par with the assembly line in factories in decades gone by or smart working in the days of Covid-19. In the last year, computers and webcams, smartphones, video conferencing software and a more widespread familiarity with these communication tools has increased the prevalence of remote meetings. Transforming them from an inconvenient alternative to a reliable stopgap.
The global pandemic has hindered face-to-face meetings, but it hasn't halted them altogether and in the future there will still be a need for face-to-face interactions and meeting rooms. After all, human beings have come this far thanks to 200,000 years of social evolution.
Meeting rooms: places to collaborate and create
Often, during a remote meeting, you may feel that you are more focused and efficient; however, at the same time, you feel a sense of alienation and, after you have finished connecting, you wonder what you are missing.
For example, working from home can make the creative and innovative process, which is often the foundation of many firms' strengths, more difficult. By creativity, we mean the ability to generate new thoughts, and by innovation, we mean the ability to put them into practice. However, an important aspect of the innovation process is that it almost always works via collaboration and teamwork. And new ideas flourish as long as the team is in the right environment - like meeting rooms - where they can express themselves and cultivate meaningful relationships.
But why is it so important to have a space where you can express yourself professionally? Because nonverbal communication comes into play, which includes many aspects ranging from tone of voice, posture and facial expressions.
Nonverbal signals serve to generate and develop an interaction with the other, transmitting information that is fundamental to maintaining communication and interpreting it accurately.
The disadvantages of a virtual meeting
We are social animals. We are, by nature, inclined to be in contact with each other, which becomes an essential part of defining our identity and our daily lives.
In a virtual meeting, there are fewer - if any - opportunities to be spontaneous, to use body language, facial expressions or gestures to communicate nonverbally. Most experts agree that 70% to 93% of all communication is nonverbal, which means that a lot of communication is being lost with an increased reliance on virtual meetings. This limits the ability to understand the emotional states of others and can lead to a greater risk of misunderstandings and mistrust.
Direct contact with others enables learning by modeling, i.e. watching how others do it, which is how we learn most of what we know and, above all, what we can do. This allows us to observe the experiences of others and thus understand how relationships work within the organisation, and interpret the context.
In addition, when taking business growth into the equation, very rarely are business deals concluded with no prior face-to-face meetings. The importance of building rapport with clients and potential business prospects is the driving force behind any successful business.
Silversquare provides unique coworking spaces in Belgium & Luxembourg: these are offices designed for professionals who want efficiency, focus and connections of the highest quality. The goal? To create workspaces to support and cultivate the companies and communities of tomorrow. To this end, Silversquare offers no less than 85 meeting rooms that can accommodate from 2 to 150 people. Note that Silversquare members have free access to meeting rooms for up to 4 people.