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Tips for Spontaneous Meetings!

Updated: Oct 29, 2023

Here are some tips for holding effective spontaneous meetings:

  • Be clear about the purpose.

What do you want to achieve by the end of the meeting?

  • Only invite the people who are essential to the meeting.

This will help to keep the meeting focused and productive.

  • Set a time limit.

This will help ensure the meeting stays on track and everyone's time is respected. Aim to keep the meeting to 15-30 minutes!

  • Encourage participation from everyone.

Make sure that everyone has the opportunity to share their ideas and opinions.

  • Take notes and follow up on any action items.

This will help ensure that the meeting is productive and that any decisions are implemented.

  • Be respectful.

Even though the meeting is spontaneous, respecting everyone's time and opinions is essential. Listen to what others have to say and avoid interrupting.

Multiple spontaneous meetings are taking place in the office.

When is the right time for a spontaneous meeting?

  • When the matter is urgent and needs to be addressed immediately.

  • When the meeting is short, it will not significantly disrupt employees' workflow and productivity.

  • When the meeting is to discuss a minor issue or to brainstorm ideas.

How to create a culture of spontaneous meetings

Here are some tips on how to create a culture of spontaneous meetings:

  • Encourage people to use the space for spontaneous meetings.

Let people know that the space is there for them to use and that they don't need a specific agenda or purpose for the meeting.

  • Make it easy for people to schedule meetings on the fly.

If you have a meeting scheduling tool, make sure it's easy for people to book meetings at short notice.

  • Make meetings fun.

People who enjoy going to meetings are more likely to do it spontaneously. Try to make meetings as engaging and informative as possible.

  • Encourage collaboration.

One of the best things about spontaneous meetings is that they can lead to collaboration and innovation. Encourage people to share their ideas and to work together to solve problems.

  • Be open to feedback.

Ask people for feedback on how you can improve your spontaneous meetings. This will help you to create a culture of meetings that everyone enjoys.

Challenges of spontaneous meetings in remote work:

  • Lack of physical proximity:

In an office setting, tapping on a coworker's shoulder or popping into their office for a quick chat is easy. In a remote setting, however, employees must be more intentional about scheduling communication, even for brief conversations.

  • Need to schedule time in advance:

This can be time-consuming and disruptive, and it can also be challenging to coordinate schedules, especially when employees work in different time zones.

  • Challenging to build rapport and trust:

This can make it less likely that employees will feel comfortable having spontaneous conversations with their remote colleagues, especially new employees who may not have had a chance to meet their colleagues in person.

Spontaneous meetings, often unplanned and held in informal settings, have emerged as valuable tools for enhancing problem-solving, decision-making, and creativity in the workplace. While they can foster collaboration, improve productivity, and boost innovation, they can also present challenges, especially in remote work environments. To harness the benefits of these meetings, it's crucial to keep them concise, have a clear purpose, and ensure inclusivity. Additionally, creating a conducive environment for these interactions, even in a remote setting, can promote a culture of open communication and collaboration.

Soma as a Solution

Can spontaneous meetings happen in a remote work environment?

small talk in remote work

Over the past two plus years, Soma has been through various trials and errors to ensure that the behaviors and communication methods from existing offline offices can be implemented in Soma as closely to reality as possible through the actual usage experiences of over 10,000 employee users in more than 450 companies.

Soma enables spontaneous meetings by providing a virtual space where employees sit together and spend hours gathered at the office. Whether at the desk, meeting room, or The Hub, Soma allows users to recreate spontaneous interactions that often lead to increased creativity and collaboration.

Users can enjoy the surprises and connection of a physical office, all while working from anywhere in the world - bringing the gap between remote work and in-person collaboration.


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