I was fascinated by the concept of No Meeting Wednesdays when I first heard about it.
Companies like Facebook and Asana and nonprofits like Second Harvest Food Bank are implementing No Meeting Wednesday, with great results.
Meetings often cause disruptions in your day. It takes an average of 23 minutes to get back on track after an interruption, so having to attend several meetings throughout the day can really eat into your productivity time. I frequently hear from clients, “I just don’t know when I will have time to work on this!” Changing the company culture to include one day a week where team members know not to disturb one another is a great solution.
Benefits of No Meeting Wednesdays:
- Avoid disruptions to creative flow
- Create bigger blocks of time to concentrate on projects — including those “back burner” projects that keep getting pushed aside
- Reduce stress/give greater peace of mind knowing there is an entire day for you to strategize, think about bigger picture issues, be creative, and work undisrupted
- Increase team productivity
- Guarantee a “free” day to meet if urgently necessary
Here are some other ideas for how to use your no meeting day productively.
You could even take it a step further and, depending on your organizational culture, implement a “don’t expect an immediate response on Slack” day, as well.
Alternatively, you can set aside blocks of time — say, early morning or late afternoon — that are meeting-free, in order to carve out sacred chunks of undisrupted time.
In the past, I’ve recommended that clients block off chunks of standing time on their calendar to focus on particular tasks that often fall off the radar — this might mean blocking off two hours in the morning one day a week to deal with paperwork, for example. Having known blocks of time where you can work gives you peace of mind.
Finally, talk with your team before implementing this change. Poll them to see if they prefer one full day, certain hours every day, or a different configuration to enable them to be as productive as possible. We all have different productive hours within the day, so be sure to find a solution that works for everyone, or try different models and see what the team prefers.
Share your experience with No Meeting Wednesdays or other productivity-boosting techniques with us!