The era of large mahogany tables in sprawling conference rooms with floor to ceiling windows moves to the rear view mirror as businesses of all sizes plan for the future of work with hybrid employees and meeting functionality to match the changing needs.
After more than a year of video conferencing from kitchen tables, back yards, and makeshift offices, teams have adjusted to new and creative ways to stay connected, collaborative and productive even when they’re apart. As more offices begin to open their doors, if you’re thinking about the right solutions for your conference room, you’re not alone.
The staples of coveted conference rooms are shifting, and your business can be on the forefront of the trend to prepare for clients and employees joining meetings remotely and in person, together:
Step up your technology: There’s never been a better time to invest in upgraded screens, cameras and sound for meetings. Having clear audio, crisp visuals, and a great view of all attendees are the first steps to the perfect hybrid conference room. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the choices, tech specs, and set up, get quick advice on the best systems and equipment for your business from an expert IT company.
Bigger isn’t always better: Large conference rooms may look beautiful in person, but on screens they translate to floating unidentifiable heads. Smaller rooms with wide-lens cameras can lead to better conversation, improved visuals for all meeting attendees, and a more integrated collaborative experience for attendees virtually and in the room.
Think about lighting: Large windows with city views have been a long-standing conference room wish list item . . . until now. Bright backlighting behind attendees means washed out faces for those looking at the room remotely, and screen glare for everyone sitting in the conference room. Consider upgrading to include window coverings that allow for quick lighting adjustment to make screens and attendees visible to everyone.
Put productivity first: Your previous conference table likely had everyone facing the center of the table for conversations with everyone in view; however your team is now at the table and on the screen, adjusting the furniture and angles for your team to interact and maintain eye contact is key to group conversations that feel natural and yield results.
Evaluate your meeting etiquette: Maybe your company always catered lunch meetings or invited guest speakers to attend. With a hybrid workforce and meetings, consider the optics and sounds associated with your former practices. Those attending remotely will likely have a hard time hearing over a meal. Speakers may need to be positioned at the back of the room instead of the front for viewing by all attendees.
With a few quick changes, your business can welcome the team and your clients back (wherever they are) with hybrid conference rooms that are set up for seamless and successful conversations.