A new study by a research team at Sweden’s University of Malmo found that work sessions should be seen as a “treatment” rather than a decision-making behavior, foreign media reported. The meetings provide workers with a way to show off their status or express their frustrations, but rarely make decisions in the process, the researchers said.
Professor Patrick Hall, head of research, said the increase in meetings reflected a change in the labour force: fewer people were doing things and the number of “intensive participants” such as consultants at meetings increased.
Professor Hall says many managers don’t know what to do and call more meetings when they’re not sure about their role, which helps them find their place.
The study also showed that long meetings were “therapeutic” and, whatever discussed, were aimed at “complaining and being endorsed by colleagues”. But people can also lose patience and spend a lot of time playing with their phones.
Prof Hall said many regular internal meetings seemed “pointless” to participants, but that it was not about making any decisions, but about reminding employees that they were part of the organisation.
But the study also says that when people discuss professional content with colleagues at their same level, they are more likely to discuss different issues of interest to them.