Pros and cons of outdoor business meetings

Summer’s here. So why confine yourself to the strictures of the office when there’s a wide world out there to do business in?

You might make for the nearest park or cafe garden. One golf course in Phoenix, US, even offers outdoor business meeting facilities overlooking the fairways.

And Meetings Mon 16 Outdoor Meets

But before you commit to such leftfield tactics, it is prudent to weigh up the pros and cons of outdoor business meetings.

Five fors

Ideas flow

Picturesque, relaxing scenery seems to help the natural thought processes when it comes to brainstorming ideas.

Exercise

If your body is getting the benefit of the exercise of walking in, for example, a park, it follows that your mind will too.

No high-tech distractions

Renowned business blogger Nicholas Bate believes that nearby technology can provide a diversion. So why not get out of the office and switch your mobile devices off and let the creative thought processes flow?

Sun equals happy

Business partners and prospective partners are more likely to come to an agreeable decision if the sun is shining on their backs, putting them in a happy frame of mind.

Breaking out the monotony

It is easy for many businesspeople to regularly dream about their office meeting room, as they are in it so often. Going al fresco can help end the monotony by offering welcome respite and getting some fresh air into your lungs.

Five againsts

The rain

Few things are more changeable than the British weather, so you can’t rely on the sun shining for the duration of a meeting. You wouldn’t gamble your business’s success on a whim? So why gamble on a meeting’s success on something as coquettish as the UK’s weather? Having a halfway compromise, such as an out-of-office meeting staged in a marquee or outdoor covered terrace may be the solution. More and more hotels are cashing in on this trend.

The cold

If you’re focused on the job in hand, why let a sudden plunge in the barometer’s mercury endanger your meeting’s success when you could be sat in a warm, centrally-heated office? If you do persist with an outdoor venue, why not try a belt-and-braces approach by pre-booking an indoor location just in case the elements conspire against Plan A.

Worry

Your agenda should have enough to occupy you without having to worry about constantly checking weather to see if your intended outdoor meeting will be dry and warm enough.

They’re not on the guest list

In an office with a shut or even locked door, you are securely confined to the invited guests. An outdoor meeting can’t guarantee this. Wasps, ants, bees, birds and many other wild creatures will be only too happily oblivious to gatecrash your meeting, especially if there is food on the agenda. This could create a bad impression.

Legal issues

Some venues require a permit to stage outdoor meetings. So check with your local authority first.

Posted by Julie Tucker

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