Coffee and conversations

Most organizations these days are going the unconventional way and using informal ways of conducting meetings / conferences.

What if your office one day decides to conduct employees’ interactions with the CEO over breakfast at a coffees shop? Such meetings may not be conducted necessarily to discuss work related matters but they indirectly help create a healthy work environments says experts. Companies are engaging in informal meetings as it is easier to connect and the flow of ideas and opinions is more honest from both sides of the table. The need for this arose, when it was realized that for a free exchange of thoughts, it’s important to create a comfortable and an interactive platform. The seriousness of a meeting room is often very pressurizing for a junior help to boosting team building and increasing productivity levels, especially amongst the younger generation.

Meetings conducted informal settings away from the office, give executives a chance to forget their usual distractions of phone calls, emails and allow them to concentrate on the topic of the meeting to generate creative solutions. Geometric has a number of initiatives where not only the immediate manager, but also business unit heads interact with employees over a cup of coffee. Teams are also encouraged to go out for company sponsored lunches/ dinners/excursions the feeling of us as opposed to me. Some teams also car pool together and discuss business strategies and plans while traveling. We also have a number of cultural events that encourage people to come together and spend time with each other. There are also some teams which organize Friday Activity in which team members discuss mythology world history, astronomy, astrology, and other non-work related topics. Alternatively there are also creative sessions where one of the team members teachers a new art or craft to the rest. Kale Consultants also uses an informal way of conducting meetings

Wipro conducts coffee / lunch sessions with senor executives where employees get a chance to discuss topics in a free flowing manner. For example, in one of the business units, the business unit head meets a small group of employees every quarter and discusses a business priority and seeks their opinion on the issue. These meetings are also used as a way of bringing together teams that work at client sites and are therefore not able to connect on a regular basis. Periodically we conduct offsite workshops for different teams. These workshops are used for planning reviews and team building.

In an organization there are people from diverse backgrounds and different ideologies who work together so they are bound to have conflicting ideas. Such activities help to break the ice and create a comfortable environment where in everyone can openly put forth his or her ideas.

For any working environment it’s very important that the employees feel comfortable with their superiors. A majority of today’s workforce comprises of youngsters who tend to get bored with repetitive work very easily. So it is important that some change in the daily grind is introduced in different forms. This helps them to enhance their confidence skills and productivity and pave the way for an open and transparent communication. After all, it’s not only about all work and no play, right?

  • Priyanka

    Informal meetings would be the most appropriate methods to break the ice across management levels. There are always rounds of doubts, wrong perceptions, gossips, mental blocks in the minds of individuals about ppl at either levels. It would greatly hellp in injecting an environment of friendliness and trust within the organisation.

  • Hitesh Tejani

    Our M.D. routinely treats us over Lunch / High Tea. We discuss anything and everything but work in these meetings. Lot of good thought exchange happens which enables employees to share a lot about family. Our MD being a Philanthropic, helps employees in all aspects.