Tue 14 Jul 2009
If you work with a group of people, you have to hold meetings. There is really no way around it. You can minimize the number of meetings you have. You can hold meetings online or by phone. But you still have to hold meetings at some point to discuss the tasks at hand.
So, how much do these meetings really cost? You might be surprised at how expensive they can be. Take our weekly management meeting as an example. We gather in our conference room to go over the key projects we are managing.
Let's take a look at what goes into calculating the cost for a 1 hour meeting:
- Staff time (i.e., estimated hourly rate of combined staff)
- Proportionate share of employee benefits - vacation time, medical, 401k, training, travel, other perks
- Proportionate share of office space rent, computers, lunches and other direct or indirect costs
We're a pretty lean company and only those who really need to be in the meeting are there. Yet in our case, this 1 hour meeting costs about $800. Which means that if we run over by just 15 minutes, it costs $1000.
This does not include the productivity costs, which is the time that could be spent doing something else. Of course, you would hope that the meeting is productive enough that it helps guide the team in case we needed to tweak the tasks.
So, what do you think? Is your next meeting worth the cost?