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How much do meetings cost?

Have you ever considered the cost or investment of people’s time in meetings and associated overheads associated with conducting meetings?

For most businesses or organisations conducting meetings is an investment of human resources and money to operate the business or achieve an objective.

The value of time is important to everyone as most people never have enough time to achieve what they would aspire to.

The quantity of meetings people attend varies depending on their role and business but can typically vary from as little as 5 to in excess of 100, while meeting duration varies from a short half hour Huddle to lengthy meetings taken several hours.

For example, a person attending 20 meetings per month of an average duration of one hour spends 20 hours per month in meetings. By contrast people in senior management roles may attend a large number of meetings eg. 80 meetings at an average of one hour per meeting equating to 80 hours per month or approximately 50% of their time.

The total cost of people to a company can be determined as a direct cost including overheads or as an opportunity cost where people are charged at a rate per hour for their services. Although this varies significantly if we consider average rates of $50/h, $100/h and $200/h the graph in Figure 1 below shows the monthly investment in a person’s cost per month attending various numbers of meetings per month.

Figure 1

For a company with 100 people with an average of 10 people per meeting, the total cost per month for people in meetings for various quantities of meetings and average costs per hour of $50/h and $100/h is shown in Figure 2.

Figure 2

Additional costs associated with meetings include:

In reality, many companies invest millions of $ per year in meetings, therefore, to achieve good ROI Meetings need to achieve optimal results for the lowest cost.

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