Meeting rooms invariably presage the tone that meetings will adopt and the tack that they will take. Meeting rooms play a key part during negotiations. They give a fair idea about the meeting hosts. In other words, meeting and conference rooms reflect the mental attitudes of the hosts just as body language displays the mental condition of a person.
What Meeting Rooms Mean
Senior HR managers and psychologists say that spacious and bright meeting rooms that are carpeted from wall-to-wall and adorned brilliantly with polished and period furniture, chandeliers and flowers, signify lots of things. For example, they symbolize the cooperative and genial spirit in the meeting hosts. They also accentuate the positive mindset of the meeting hosts and display the hosts’ eagerness to collaborate with the meeting invitees. Experts say that such meeting hosts are willing to reach an agreement, are flexible and are open to change and even open to dissent. Some VPs are in the habit of speaking to venue managers about the decor of meeting venues, personally. It doesn’t matter whether such VPs possess or don’t possess a good aesthetic sense and great interior decoration skills – it is enough that they want to lend their personal touch to the decoration of meeting rooms. Everything, from the gilt-edged portraits and mirrors on the walls, the roses and gerberas in the porcelain flower vases, and the rich satin upholstery on the sofa settees to the softness of the velvety carpets, and the positioning of the grand piano, is inspected by them personally. Frequently CEOs decide the multi-cuisine menus for the luncheons and dinners that are to be served at the meetings, themselves.
Involvement of Senior Managers in Designing Meeting Rooms
Many senior managers prefer to look into the technical aspects of conference rooms themselves. Such managers are experienced in conducting meetings and as they have an eye for detail, they can immediately spot omissions and defects in meeting rooms, which may be in the form of:
• the absence of LCD projectors
• the absence of screens
• the absence of TVs
• the absence of computers and laptops with Internet connections
• the absence of whiteboards with markers
• the absence of flip-charts
• the absence of lecterns with microphones
• the absence of banners
• the absence of other meeting equipment
• paint peeling from the walls
• the improper positioning of the conference table
• improper seating arrangements
• improper meeting-room acoustics
Active Involvement of Meeting Hosts in Setting Seating Arrangements in and Designing Meeting Rooms
Seating arrangements in meeting rooms are almost always specified by the CEOs and VPs who summon the meeting and never by the event managers as seating arrangements in seminar rooms signify official hierarchy and pecking orders. Meeting hosts, who determine the ambiance of conference rooms themselves, before they specify the same to the venue managers, are people who are generally keen to create a good impression on the meeting participants. If the meeting rooms are designed and set up through the active involvement of meeting hosts:
• it means that the hosts have a positive attitude towards the meeting
• it means that concerted, sincere and sustained effort has been made by the meeting hosts towards welcoming the guests and making them feel at home
• it means that the meeting hosts have made a genuine attempt in setting the stage for an amicable meeting with the meeting attendees
• it indicates that the meeting hosts intend to cooperate and be democratic
Hence, there is more chance that meetings will be successful for all the parties concerned if they are held in meeting venues that have been designed meticulously, and through the involvement of the meeting hosts, keeping in mind, the needs and the comfort levels of the meeting invitees.
Banqueting Facilities in Meeting Rooms
The way food is served during and after a meeting is also an indicator of the tone of the meeting. Sometimes, for a meeting, several meeting rooms are hired so that one serves as the conference room, one as the presentation area and the third, as the banquet hall. A suite of convention rooms that have elaborate banqueting facilities is generally large and posh. Meeting rooms with banqueting amenities obviously have the well-being of the invitees in mind and are invariably hailed as ‘grand’ meeting venues by the invitees. There are higher chances of success for all the parties involved in a conference in meeting rooms with lavish banqueting amenities.
Cold and Scary Meeting Rooms
On the other hand, meeting rooms sometimes look ‘bare’. They exude coldness instead of warmth. Now you may think, ‘who on earth would want to design a meeting room in this manner?’ When they are venues for hostile meetings that focus on hostile and forced mergers, hostile deals, employee retrenchment, and other negative corporate issues, meeting rooms take on the appearance of a ‘haunted house’ or a scuttled and abandoned apartment. It is not that companies go out of their way to select ugly meeting rooms for their meetings. It is just that no one focuses on the decor of meeting rooms when they are focusing on ‘unpleasant’ corporate issues. And so the decor goes neglected. The side which emerges as the undisputed winner in a competitive meeting hardly converses with the losing side after the meeting is over. There is no scope for small talk and chit chats in such meetings. And naturally, the meeting rooms begin to mirror the ‘cool’ and ‘icy’ feelings between the competing sides. The steely furniture and the steel wall panels that are present in place of luxurious wainscoting become more prominent in meeting rooms where animosity is on the meeting agenda. Such meeting rooms smack of professionalism. Business, of course, is the main objective in all meeting rooms, but conference rooms where both parties want a consensus or a win-win agreement, are effective platforms in which business and pleasure can blend seamlessly. But when you are handing the pink slip to many employees, you would hardly organize a gala feast for them. And if you are investigating a major fraud that has drained the exchequer of your company, you would not bother to look at flower arrangements and the sparkle of the chandeliers. Automatically, the glass-and-steel of the meeting rooms would become conspicuous. And if you want to leave a losing side high and dry, you will deliberately take the boardroom battle into the worst looking meeting room.
Meeting Rooms for Pressing Meetings
Meetings urgently summoned are also hosted in meeting rooms that are not properly equipped or decorated. There is no time for aesthetics and niceties when meetings are called at short notice and participants and presenters have to make do with whatever equipment that is readily available. Emergency meetings may not necessarily be hostile or frightening meetings. They are just meetings that are summoned suddenly to address problems that have cropped up unexpectedly.
Choosing the Right Meeting Rooms
As there are different meeting venues for different purposes, you must ensure that you are picking the right meeting room for the right purpose. It is just as ridiculous to organize a funeral ceremony in a plush and sprawling hotel as it is creepy to celebrate a rise in profits at a spot next to the graveyard. Consult a reliable online diary planner before a meeting. A reliable online diary planner will give you an insight into what you should do to host a meeting properly, through its many hi-tech features and functionalities. The Venue section of any authentic online diary planner allows you to upload venue details and the photographs of conference rooms and venues so that you can refer to them and select an appropriate venue for your meeting, easily. The Venue section of any authentic online diary planner helps to underpin and facilitate the meeting-rooms selection procedure. A trustworthy online diary planner is designed to offer customized solutions to you regarding the meeting-management process. To host meetings that will create an impact on everyone, choose your meeting rooms carefully and take the help of a trustworthy online diary planner.