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How to create the perfect open plan meeting space.

The meeting room is a core piece of the meeting experience. Effective meeting room design can impact and change your entire meeting. Well-designed meeting rooms can put attendees at ease, encourage conversation, and induce creativity.  It’s been a year of upheaval for many businesses, with lots of workers still based at home, or at least working more flexibly. But the office is still an important part of our working life, and for the many businesses that want to have face to face meetings with clients and employees.

We have provided a few tips on what you should consider when redesigning your meeting space.

1) Accommodate connection styles

OK – we’re all supposed to be Zoom or Team video conferencing champions by now however how much privacy does your meeting space provide? Consider using acoustic fabrics on upholstery, it makes a world of difference. 

We usually see businesses surrounding desks with extremely high screen and side dividers, boxing a person into a space! Why diminish the open plan vibe in your office? Using a mobile pod allows each individual to have a quiet space with the option of reconfiguring your floor plan if you fancy a change.

2) Enable meaningful experiences

Some people may have higher engagement with interactive experiences, while others are more interested in traditional education methods. Always think of your brand/product. What do you want people to achieve in your meeting space?

  • Presenting a new product? 
  • Discussing materials?
  • Morning brief to your team? 

3) Design

Ineffective meeting spaces may be costing your organisation thousands of pounds a year by not aligning with your team’s day-to-day workflows.  That’s where effective office design comes into play. However, it’s not as simple as figuring out how people use your office’s meetings spaces; it’s about understanding how your team uses your office as a whole.

The average meeting space is only occupied 36% of the time! That means the average office could benefit from a smaller meeting space and using that additional space to incorporate quiet work areas. At the same time, not all meeting spaces need to be formal meeting rooms. Instead, you can have several meeting areas for smaller groups that break down with moveable wall systems to form one large conference room. Consider using a mix of materials to break up each space.

4) Look up and look down

Introducing innovative lighting and creating acoustic design above your head will benefit your meeting space. Nobody wants a spot light on their face for 8 hours! Use Baffles to invite colour in areas and support noise reduction in areas where needed. We love to create zoning areas with a mix of flooring ideas. Blocks of colour can sign post a one-way system around your open plan office. It can also segment those individual meeting spaces.

5) Think posture

Furnishing a meeting space is about more than colour scheme and design style; it’s also about comfort and durability. Essentially, the best conference room chairs feel as good as they look. They’ll support posture as much as they suit the décor. That’s because, when your colleagues, clients and employees sit down in your meeting room, you want them to be able to focus, resist distractions and be productive — and chairs affect all of these elements. Believe it or not, the conference room furniture you pick plays a major role in how well meetings run, how effectively individuals can work and more.

Here are some things to remember when picking out your new furniture…

  • What’s comfortable? You probably already know that ergonomic seating can revolutionise the way people work at the office. However, did you also know that this includes conference rooms? Because ergonomic chairs add comfort, encourage proper posture, and reduce aches and pains, they can help people stay focused —even during long meetings and presentations. Look for comfortable, customisable seating options in order to maximize the value of your seating options at the office.

  • Are they adjustable? A big component in ergonomics is customisability. You want chairs that can be adjusted to fit different body types and sizes from day to day.

  • What looks good? While aesthetics aren’t the only deciding factor in shopping for seating they are an important factor. You want chairs that fit your office style and branding. Likewise, you want furnishings that will make your meeting space an attractive, pleasing place to work. Think about colours, style, materials and how the chairs’ overall aesthetic will fit your space.

  • Can they move easily? When attendees need to pivot their chairs to look at a speaker, collaborate with neighbours or participate in some group strategy session, having chairs with wheels comes in handy. Rather than needing to lift and move chairs to other parts of the room, they can simply roll around where they need to go. If flexibility is important to you in your conference room, look for chairs with wheels.

If you would like some help or advice on designing your meeting room get in touch with our design team by emailing info@whitespaceni.com

 

 

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