1 in 3 have travelled to a meeting that could have been done by email

Report by NYS Meetings & Events looks at the impact high numbers of meetings has on the environment and mental health.

Just over a third (37%) of professionals have travelled for a meeting that could have been summarised in an email.

A report called ‘The unnoticed impact of business travel’ published by NYS Meetings & Events has found that there are plenty of people going to meetings that they believe are unnecessary. 

And while face-to-face meetings remain important for most of those surveyed, 30% of professionals asked had only attended a meeting because they felt it would negatively affect their career if they didn’t. 

“Millions of people travel for business meetings every week and in doing so generate significant amounts of carbon emissions,” said Leanne Fowler, director of strategic meetings management at NYS Meetings & Events.

“As businesses work to become more sustainable and minimise their impact on the planet, staff need to assess how many of the meetings that they attend are effective for everyone involved and what the alternatives might be”.

The survey also found 36% of people only attended a meeting because they were told to. An additional 27% said they arrived only to find out they didn’t need to be at the meeting at all. 

When asked about the effects of travelling for lots of meetings on their mental health, 15% of professionals admitted it’s something they’ve struggled with, while this increased to almost one in five (19%) for 25-34 year olds.

These findings mirrored an assessment from the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, which found that those who travelled for 21 or more days a month were more likely to report trouble sleeping, mild anxiety and symptoms of depression.

You can download the full report, ‘The unnoticed impact of business travel’, here.

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