31 Need-to-Know Meeting Statistics [2023 Update]: Virtual, Zoom, In-Person, Productivity

You can’t run a company or business without having meetings. Whether it’s one per week, one or two a day, or a jam packed week, they serve as an avenue to strategize, plan, pass information, and more. However, the concept of business meetings has evolved a lot in the past decade, especially from 2020 on as the world has shifted to remote.

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Top 2022 Meeting Statistics 

Based on extensive research, here are the most important meeting facts you should know:

  • Across the U.S, there are over 25 million meetings taking place each day.
  • Up to 90% of American workers multitask during virtual meetings.
  • 35% of employees spend 2 – 5 hours daily attending meetings and calls.
  • An estimated $37+ billion is spent annually on unproductive meetings.
  • More than 60% of employees agree that video is the best for team engagement.
  • 84% of employees say they would be more inclined to work for or stay with a company that offers more flexibility to work from home.

The way meetings take place has evolved significantly over the last decade, and as research indicates, this change will not stop. So, let’s explore some of these meeting statistics in more detail.

General Meeting Statistics

Well-run meetings are essential for every high-functioning organization. These general meeting statistics are gathered from various research, polls, and lists:

In the United States alone, there are around 25 million meetings per day

This means that most organizations and companies feel the need to have meetings regularly. These meetings could range from planning, status update meetings, or even emergencies. Also, such meetings could be as brief as ten minutes or last up to an hour.

Mondays and Fridays aren’t favorite days for meetings

Over 47% of respondents in a survey indicated that Mondays are the worst meeting days, while 40% portrayed Fridays as the worst meeting days. The research suggests that the start and end of the work week are not ideal meeting days.

Meetings go better with agendas

Research on meetings indicated that 43% of the respondents were more confused after poorly organized meetings. In addition,  44% responded that they couldn’t finish their work due to ineffective meetings.

Multitasking is quite common in meetings

According to a survey, 92% of the respondents admitted to multitasking during meetings. However, while 41% confessed to multitasking “often” or “all the time,” 49% responded that they were doing things that were unrelated to work.

Top-level staff spend 50% of their time in meetings

From planning and strategizing to attending the meetings, upper management spends half the time at work from one meeting to another. Since they are the decision-makers, they need to come together more often than other staff members to make decisions that affect other employees and the organization.

Virtual Meeting and Video Conferencing Statistics

Working from home has never been as popular as it is right now. It is possible to effectively coordinate with employees in remote locations thanks to virtual meetings. The latest statistic for virtual meetings and video conferencing are:

Executives decide what video conferencing tool to use for meetings

In 58% of organizations, the executives have more influence over what tool the company will use for meetings. This accounts for instances where a conferencing tool is selected, several employees aren’t familiar with it or struggle with it.

Over 50% of workers on virtual meetings agree it’s okay to eat on calls

Considering that a virtual meeting can occur during someone’s lunch or breakfast time, more than half of virtual meeting participants don’t see a problem with eating while on a call.

Most employees prefer fewer and shorter meetings

A survey revealed that 57% of employees want fewer and shorter meetings. Many employees would like to hold meetings for only the most important circumstances. Also, when the meetings take place, they should be as brief as possible, focusing on only the meeting agenda.

Most employees multitask during virtual meetings

While virtual and video conferencing meetings are taking place, 68% percent of employees check their emails. Also, 50% manage to keep messaging friends and family, while 20% check their social media timelines.

Four in ten employees only clean the part of their room visible on camera

So, they set it up to look as professional as possible, even if the other parts could be disorganized.

Within the last 12 months, 71% of Zoom users said “you’re on mute” during meetings

When most meetings start on Zoom, participants are usually asked to place themselves on mute until it’s their turn to speak. However, some people tend to forget they’re muted.

In-Person vs. Virtual Meeting Statistics

With more people working from home because of the COVID-19, there’s usually some comparison between in-person and virtual meetings in terms of being more productive and efficient. So, let’s take a quick look at what the numbers have to say:

53% of workers prefer virtual meetings

Despite the growing popularity of virtual meetings, 47% of workers would still rather have in-person meetings. More people tend to be more interested in using conferencing tools because of the ease of use, cost, and convenience.

35% of employees typically spend up to five hours daily on meetings

This data shows that more than half the time is spent attending physical or virtual meetings for many workers who work eight-hour jobs. So, regardless of the form of meeting, employees’ productivity is on meeting days.

During online meetings, 15% of professionals tend to house chores

Apart from laundry, cooking, and cleaning, remote workers also try to engage in other distracting tasks like childcare and self-grooming while in a virtual meeting. However, unlike physical meetings, participants of virtual meetings don’t always get to see each other, or every other person listens while someone or a few people speak most of the time.

Since the outbreak of COVID-19, up to 50% of employees have spent one to three hours weekly on virtual meetings

The pandemic presented many challenges to business operations, and many organizations took severe financial hits. Virtual meetings quickly provided a convenient solution. However, these meetings usually have technical issues, or time is lost because they don’t begin early.

American employees spend an average of 8 hours weekly in virtual meetings

This can be broken down to about an hour and thirty minutes every work day. However, in some situations, a meeting can take up to three or more hours in a single day.

Statistics on Ineffective Meetings and Productivity

Meetings aren’t always successful. Also, they can have negative impacts on employees’ productive time. Meetings can also cost a business a lot of money in terms of equipment and refreshments. Here’s what we could dig up:

Companies lose a whopping $37 billion annually to unproductive meetings

This figure includes the cost of more than 200,000 hours of work lost each year. Also, a single large organization can lose over $300 million on unnecessary meetings.

Less than 40% of workplace meetings follow meeting agendas

This is detrimental to businesses because agendas help employees and executives stay on track. Agendas are also helpful to ensure that too much time isn’t wasted on unnecessary discussions. Participants of meetings also prepare beforehand when they know what to look forward to.

People spend up to 4 hours weekly preparing for meetings

This means that both employees and managers spend as much time preparing for a meeting as they attend one. So, there is also an hour used to prepare for every hour of the meeting. This consumes too much time.

Up to 30% of employees don’t think their ideas are appreciated in meetings

Many workers believe that their colleagues or managers quickly shut down their ideas. This affects morale as some people feel like their voices aren’t heard and their opinions aren’t valued.

Managers and executives consider 67% of meetings unsuccessful

These statistics show that more than half of the meetings that businesses organize are failures. This includes meetings that don’t start on time, employees joining the meeting late, and the inability to achieve every item on the agenda.

Statistics on Employee Opinions on Meetings

Employees’ attitudes towards work and general personalities vary all over the world. This affects what they think and how they feel about business meetings. Here are some insightful statistics:

People have significantly different ideas of tardiness

According to a study conducted with 665 participants, it was discovered that lateness was a loose and elusive concept. Just a fifth of the participants described tardiness as an arrival after a scheduled meeting had started. For 20%, there’s a certain grace period that could be allowed. Only 3% thought that being late was a sign that you weren’t prepared for the meeting.

70 out of 100 employees believe that meetings are a waste of their time

More than 70% of workers report that their time was wasted because of unimportant or canceled meetings. Annually, regular staff lose about three days and 2 hours of their time waiting for meetings to start. Meanwhile, executives waste five days and 19 hours annually.

Eight out of ten workers consider morning meetings to be the best

If the meeting can’t be at the start of the morning, anytime before lunch would be ideal. At the beginning of work days, energies are still high, so it would be hard to find employees dozing off at meetings or feeling too sluggish to participate actively. However, 1% found evening meetings to be more productive.

65% of employees consider video meetings as the best for team engagement

More workers prefer being on video meetings rather than conference calls. They get to see other work colleagues no matter where they are. If there’s an inside joke or important news, everyone in the video meeting can watch their reactions in real-time.

38% of employees blame executives and managers for crazy meeting schedules

Upper management is usually responsible for preparing meetings. So, when there are long meetings or too many meetings in a week, workers blame their bosses for not being considerate enough.

Meeting Trends and Predictions

It is a great idea to keep up with the latest meeting trends and expert predictions. It makes it easier to improve current meeting practices and plan for the future. Let’s see what the statistics say:

Meetings are getting shorter

So far, the average length of meetings has decreased by over 20%. In 2021 alone, most workers spent about 11% less of their daily work time in meetings.

Employees will choose their employers

84% of employees have indicated that they would prefer to stick with a company that allows them to work from home permanently or at least a few days a week. However, as flexible work options become increasingly popular with organizations, employees are far more likely to pick employers that meet their demands.

Since the start of COVID-19, there’s been an increase in the number of people attending meetings

13.5% more people have been attending meetings since 2020. Although this may be good for some businesses, the ideal number of meeting attendees is five to eight people.

The number of meetings people attended from 2020 to 2021 increased by over 12%

One main reason for this could be that companies now prefer virtual meetings to physical ones. However, even though workers are attending more meetings, it doesn’t affect the length of the meetings.

The average CEO takes part in over 30 meetings weekly

Having so many meetings can take up to 72% of their time. However, it’s common for top-level corporate jobs to require more meeting times than others. Meanwhile, middle management staff spends about 35% of their time in meetings, and upper management spends 50%.

Meeting Statistics FAQs

Research shows about 11 million meetings take place in the United States every day.

The average business employee takes part in about eight meetings weekly. However, for top executive members of a company, the average number of meetings in a week could be as high as 17.

It’s not easy to pinpoint an exact figure. This is because the time spent in meetings varies depending on the job title and level. For example, middle management employees spend up to 35% of their time in meetings, while the average CEO is as high as 72%.

As shocking as it may seem, statistics show that most meetings are unproductive. There are various reasons for the lack of productivity. According to executives, 37% of meetings don’t add value to their companies.

Collectively, companies waste as much as $37 billion annually on meetings. This is a result of failed or canceled meetings. A lot of money and time goes into meetings, but not every one of them achieves its purpose.

The most definitive way to know a meeting is effective is if there’s an agenda. An agenda clearly shows that the organizers of the meetings have goals and targets for the meeting, rather than wasting time. Also, if the agenda is followed correctly, the meeting will be productive.

Final Thoughts

So, there you have it! A collection of some of the most interesting statistics about meetings. Meetings are part of running a business, and we hope that the pieces of information in this article will help you understand the dynamics surrounding meetings a lot more.

Whether you are worried about spending too much time in meetings or wasting resources for meetings, now you know the current reality, trends, and future possibilities. It is up to you to optimize your meeting practices for the best results!


Eric Moore

Eric Moore is the owner of Overheard on Conference Calls. As a corporate veteran, he’s seen and heard it all. And when it comes to office chairs, desks, and accessories, he’s used it all. As a former office furniture sales rep, he bring his expertise to provide readers the knowledge to choose the right products for them. He also has his OSHA Ergonomics Certificate.