Make your meetings on the go and reap serious health benefits.
By your third hour stuck in front of a computer monitor, your office job can really start taking a toll on your body. Sitting all day isn’t just bad for your posture or pain, but can also raise your risk of obesity and chronic diseases like diabetes. Of course, you can help cut down on aches and pains by setting up your desk for better posture, but better yet, make yourself get up and move more. If all this marathon sitting is wreaking havoc on your health, there might be a solution for you to try: the walking meeting.
Instead of going from your desk to the conference room and back, take that team meeting outside. If your job is always “go, go, go,” it can be tough to squeeze in walks and breaks, so fusing crucial meetings with a stroll around the block is a great way to kill two birds.
The benefits go well beyond your pedometer step count. A walking meeting can re-energize you during your afternoon slump, boost team morale by enhancing professional relationships, and improve creativity and problem-solving skills by getting you out of the stuffy office and into the wildness of the great outdoors.
Here’s how to have a productive and mood-boosting walking meeting.
Pick a route ahead of time. Choose a length that’s conducive with the amount of time you think your meeting will take, and avoid routes that are too noisy or busy.
Choose a time wisely. Mid afternoon is the perfect opportunity since that’s when most employees’ energy levels really start to crumble.
Consider your group size. A group of two or three is perfect, but larger groups can get their walk-and-talk on, too. Instead of crowding the sidewalk and shouting to hear each other, split into smaller groups. (This is a more productive way to brainstorm anyway since many people are more comfortable sharing ideas in a small-group setting.) Then, establish a meeting spot to reconvene and share out your best ideas.
Wanna keep moving? Here are more ways to sneak activity into your day.
Oppezzo M, and Schwartz DL. Give your ideas some legs: The positive effect of walking on creative thinking. J Exp Psychol. 2014;40(4):1142-52.
Guide to walking meetings. Seattle, WA: Feet First. (Accessed on September 13, 2017 at http://www.feetfirst.org/walk-and-maps/walking-meetings.)