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Wasting Time in Meetings? (And What to Do About It)


Stop wasting time in meetings with a few easy tweaks to your meeting room technology. Around 15% of the time spent in meetings is wasted time, largely due to inefficient meeting room equipment. This lost time can add up to significant losses in other areas, too. A tech upgrade is a good start, especially to an interactive whiteboard with strong digital whiteboarding support.

Read on to learn more about how to use technology to create more efficient meetings or check out our solution page for greater meeting collaboration. 

Productive meetings are a great thing. Sadly, many things can derail meeting productivity. The result? We end up wasting time in meetings. There are many culprits: lack of preparation, poorly defined objectives, and latecomers or no-shows, just to name a few.

Video conferencing helps make meetings more productive. When we see ourselves on-screen, our behavior improves considerably. Being aware of one’s demeanor translates into much more productive meetings. Less time is wasted when people are aware of any distractions they create.

Yet even with videoconferencing, meeting time is wasted due to AV setup: connecting to a display, launching a video call, switching presenters, etc. 

Time wasted in meetings accounts for 15% of an hour-long meeting (according to industry data and ViewSonic customer feedback). That’s 9 minutes of precious time lost just setting up. The time-suck from tech issues makes a big impact. Time is wasted. Productivity is lost. 


How Big is The Problem of Wasted Time?

Lost meeting productivity is a big deal. Problems arise when situations conspire to sap meeting time and productivity. Because we spend so much time in meetings, even a relatively small percentage of wasted time quickly adds up. 


A recent group of studies show there are between 36 and 56 million meetings per day. Ineffective meetings cost the US economy between $70 to $283 billion

Time is zero-sum. Every minute spent in a meeting is time not getting something else done. That’s why wasting time in meetings is such a big deal. Focusing without distraction on a cognitively demanding task is referred to as deep work. It’s essential for creativity and efficiency. Wasting time in meetings hinders a person’s ability to concentrate on their own tasks.


When people don’t have time to focus on their work, productivity suffers greatly. When this happens too often, employees suffer from a loss of work-life balance and increased burnout. This results in less efficiency, less creativity, and missed workdays.

When employees consistently find themselves wasting time in meetings, job satisfaction drops. This holds true regardless of personality, pay, and other key factors. Meetings with frequent time-wasting behaviors correlate with lower market share, less innovation, and reduced employment stability

Meeting Time Wasters

Many factors contribute to time-wasting, productivity sapping, sleep-inducing meetings. One proven way to reduce time wasted in meetings is to use video conferencing. The business benefits of video conferencing include improved communication and fewer distractions. The most common meeting time wasters include:


  • Poor preparation by meeting host 
  • Inviting too many/unnecessary people
  • Latecomers and no-shows
  • Lack of clear, action-oriented agenda
  • Straying off-topic/letting people talk too much
  • Not diverting longer discussion into follow up meetings


Tech Time Wasters

We like to think our tech isn’t a waste of time. Clearly, meeting room tech brings a host of benefits. Yet, content sharing technology quickly becomes a burden. Consider evidence from a recent study, which found that: 

  • Meeting room tech problems consumed 10% of IT managers’ time
  • IT managers address 447.2 meeting room tech incidents a year
  • On average, an incident eats up 23.1 minutes of an IT manager’s time
  • In a 12-month span, 69% of presentation teams were let down by meeting room tech
  • More than 1 in 5 extended meetings are due to meeting room equipment failure 

The Frustration of Time Wasted in Meetings

Wasted time at the start of a meeting is particularly problematic. The time it takes to get a meeting up and running is among the most valuable few minutes in the room. Just like the common saying about breakfast, these minutes set the tone for the rest of the meeting.


Imagine your team is doing all the right things to set the stage for running an effective meeting. Great prep. Action-oriented objectives. All the right people are in the room. Then, imagine the meeting host struggles to get the remote office connected. Or to display their presentation onscreen. Minutes tick by. Minds wander. Attention drifts. Previously focused energy dissipates as attendees shift off-topic.

In another scenario, your video call connects with ease. But your in-room participants need to pass and connect a cable to take turns sharing content from their laptops. Or your wireless content sharing app isn’t working.

Tick-Tock. You guessed it – more wasted minutes and wandering minds.

On average, 15% of a meeting is time wasted. Setting up for a video conference is a big contributor. Other frustrating, time-consuming tasks include:

  • Connecting the initial presenter’s laptop to the in-room display
  • Connecting subsequent presenter laptops to the display
  • Taking turns sharing content to the big screen
  • Updating presenter content then resending to participants
  • Slowdowns for participants to take photos of onscreen meeting notes

Cost of Time Wasted in Meetings

Let’s take a look at how the cost of 15% wasted time in meetings adds up. The average US salary level for a senior manager is $150,000. For the sake of simplicity, we’ll assume all meetings run for one hour, which costs $72.12. 

Applying the 15% stat from above, wasting time in meetings costs $10.82 for each meeting this manager attends. Let’s assume this exec is in a collaborative industry and attends the reported 17 meetings per week. That’s $183.94 down the drain due to lost meeting productivity, per week for this one person!

Monthly, we’re up to a $735.58 loss to unproductive meeting set up time – for this one senior manager. The annual loss (assuming 260 workdays/year) is $9,562.50. Of course, it couldn’t be a meeting with just one exec. Using the same steps from above, we can calculate the cost of wasting time in meetings due to video conference setup and presenter connectivity for additional roles in the company: 


To complete the exercise, let’s find out how big the impact becomes when we look at the profile for an imaginary enterprise of 1,000 employees.


Time wasted setting up for meetings has a cost. There are also less tangible, but impactful, consequences. The sunk cost of what these professionals could have been doing during wasted time. And the long-term blow to productivity from dissatisfaction with poorly run meetings.

Boost Meeting Productivity With Content-Sharing Solutions

Boost meeting productivity with easy to use, enterprise meeting solutions. Having easy-to-connect content sharing technology is the key to reducing time wasted in meetings. ViewSonic® Interactive Flat Panel Displays are open platforms allowing you to easily Connect, Collaborate, Cast.


  • No need to pick just one.
  • Use the features from each that best meet your company’s needs.
  • Quick meeting starts matter. Lost time adds up in more ways than one. 

Getting going quickly boosts meeting productivity. The best meeting room solutions increase start-up efficiency by reducing time wasted connecting video calls and displaying content.

ViewSonic® ViewBoard® Interactive Flat Panel displays simplify the process of hosting, joining, and participating in video meetings. They come preloaded with ViewBoard Cast, QuickLaunch, and myViewBoard software.

Delivering out-of-the-box ease, ViewSonic enterprise-grade meeting solutions are efficient, secure, and easy-to-use. Along with reducing meeting start time, reliable ViewBoard solutions can notably reduce the need for IT staff intervention. 

ViewBoard Cast

Integrated into every IFP, ViewBoard Cast delivers virtually instantaneous collaboration. After a one-time app download (vCastSender), users walk into any room and easily share content from any Windows, Mac, Android, or Chrome device. PIN codes allows presenters to authorize sharing and restrict casting to those with the PIN. 

  • Meeting Productivity Rating: Very Good

A simple, easy-to-use, time-saving solution for out-of-the-box collaboration and cross-platform sharing. Reduces cost burden, with no subscription fee and virtually no need for IT involvement or training. Ideal for in-office sharing in conference rooms, huddle spaces, boardrooms and ad hoc meeting spaces equipped with a ViewSonic display. 

  • One-click sharing of virtually any content: multimedia, documents, cloud files
  • Share from any Windows, Mac, Android or Chrome device
  • Participants with Android and iOS devices can receive mirrored content from ViewBoard
  • Android & iOS device users can annotate real-time on their devices and broadcast onto the screen


Another preloaded app for meeting convenience, Quicklaunch is a simple, secure meeting room interface that delivers one-touch ease from any ViewBoard display. QuickLaunch provides a consistent, uber-easy interface that lets users join meetings, start applications, launch websites, access content, and share device screens – each with just one click. Built with security in mind, QuickLaunch keeps confidential data secure with a Room Reset feature and the option to lock down and restrict usage. 

  • Meeting Productivity Rating: Even Better

Advanced security features, compatibility with any PC hardware, and the ability to use any PC application make QuickLaunch an outstanding enterprise-class solution for boosting meeting efficiency. Launch any video conference app with one touch. The consistent interface and one-touch deployment of numerous functions save considerable time and keep focus on the topic at hand. 

  • One-touch video/web calls with support for over 30 conferencing providers 
  • Collaborate, share devices, access content and more – all with just one click
  • Room Reset clears temporary files, cache and more between meetings
  • Lock Down mode restricts usage of the meeting room PC 


Designed for the demands of leading enterprises, myViewBoard digital whiteboarding software boosts meeting productivity with a range of critical collaboration features. Enterprise-level security, annotation tools, and one-touch call with integrated Zoom VC software combine to power effective, quick-start connectivity and collaboration. adds secure, cloud-based portability. 

  • Meeting Productivity Rating: Best

All-around enterprise-grade features boost meeting productivity and let you maximize the benefits of your ViewBoard display. Quick-start Zoom video/web calls keep the focus on your meeting objectives. Cloud storage delivers portable convenience and ease. Enterprise-grade security prevents data theft. 

  • One-touch video/web call startups with built-in Zoom Video Conferencing software
  • Cloud-based portability let users quickly store, retrieve, and use docs and images from anywhere
  • Built-in casting feature allows remote users to share screens and engage in real-time
  • User-friendly handwriting recognition transforms handwritten words into typed text
  • Full-featured canvas includes numerous annotation tools to boost teamwork and collaboration
  • Protected by AES-256 encryption for locked-down, enterprise-level security 
  • An easily integrates into Hybrid Work setups

Mix & Match for Added Meeting Productivity 

One of the best features of ViewSonic’s meeting room solutions is that you don’t need to pick just one. All three come preloaded and ready to go with every ViewSonic ViewBoard Interactive Display. And all offer intuitive ease so users can take them for a spin and choose the features that work best for their needs.

We also wrote a post about designing the perfect meeting space that you may find interesting. Alternatively, check out our workplace solutions page for more insights into effective communication and collaboration between professional teams.