Survey Points to Importance of Face-to-face Meetings for Government Agencies
Meetings Mean Business, a coalition formed in 2009 to spread the word about the value that business meetings, travel and events bring to the U.S. economy, recently conducted a survey of 100 federal employees who organize, attend or influence meetings and travel as part of their jobs.
Even with the pressures on government travel to meetings, a whopping 98 percent of the respondents said that in-person meetings are important for advancing their agency’s mission.
Ninety-two percent said that engaging with colleagues, peers, partners and vendors face-to-face improves their ability to work effectively.
“Face-to-face meetings are vital for conducting government business in the most effective and efficient way possible,” said David Peckinpaugh, president of Maritz Travel Company and co-chair of Meetings Mean Business.
He added, “The survey results show that sitting down and interacting with others one-on-one provides real-time productivity and continuous opportunities for engagement.”
At a time when many government agencies are limited by tight budgets and numerous travel restrictions, 84 percent of federal workers agreed that America’s future innovation and competitiveness required engagement, collaboration and learning with those inside and outside of government.
Here are some other key findings from the study:
· Two in three federal employees say that collaborating and innovating is best done face-to-face.
· Eight in 10 agree that in-person training is better for meeting and engaging with the “right people.”
· Four in five say that they have attended an in-person event that would not have resulted in the same level of success if conducted remotely.
“Government-wide travel and in-person meetings facilitate rapid information sharing, cross-agency collaboration, professional development and private-sector partnerships,” said Michael Dominguez, senior vice president of corporate sales for MGM Resorts International and co-chair of Meetings Mean Business.
He added that it is “important for agencies to be good stewards of taxpayer dollars and be able to distinguish legitimate meetings and travel activities from isolated instances of abuse we have seen in the past.