17th June 2015 •

What’s in a meeting room name?

An area often overlooked by companies is the naming of meeting rooms. You might not think meeting room names too important; it’s just a room after all. However, meeting rooms are the place where ideas are exchanged and critical decisions are made. A place where we want our employees to be inspired, to be creative and to be positive.

So, what’s in a name? Well, for us human beings, quite a lot.  What separates us from the animal kingdom is the human mind, and to think consciously we use language. Thus, words have more impact than we envisage. They have the power to inspire us, but without thought, they can also have quite the opposite effect. How you choose your meeting room names allows you the opportunity to inspire, convey your values and your ethos/culture.

The pragmatic and more traditional approach to meeting room names is merely to go with the simple ‘Meeting Room 1’ format. Whilst there is nothing particularly wrong with this method, you may be missing a trick by adopting it. Yes it’s simple, and in instances where you have a long line of meeting rooms in a corridor it may make them easier to find, but this method will doubtless have a soporific effect on your employees. You might as well call ‘The Board Room’ – ‘The Bored Room’.

Nobody said work can’t also be fun. (Well actually, I once had a boss who said exactly that, but he has long since been discredited, as well as divorced and demoted, so I’m told). The point is, work can be and should be fun. If, by giving your meeting room a humorous theme or a whacky name you can inject a certain joie de vivre into your workforce, then it’s job done before they’ve even opened the door.

Another very good reason for choosing a meeting room name aimed at lifting the mood of your employees, is that it’s generally accepted that happy people are more productive in the workplace. (The ‘P45 Room’ at our offices for example, never fails to raise a smile…). Virgin have opted for a ‘red room’ and a ‘green room’ and both rooms are coloured accordingly. This has been devised to give the option of different mood settings for different types of meetings: red for passion, energy and stimulation; green for growth, freshness and stability. Famously, all the buildings at eBay’s headquarters in California take their name from categories within its website such as Sports, Music and Technology. The meeting rooms contained within these buildings are then named accordingly – so the rooms found within the Music building are all named after musical instruments. What’s great about this example is that by adopting key areas of your business as room names, you are also giving staff an everyday reminder of the core aspects of your business. (We don’t really have a P45 Room by the way.)

Alternatively, you may opt for famous names to inspire your employees. Many companies choose to use the names of inspirational figures from history, or even present day. Names such as ‘Gates’ (Bill, not to be mistaken with Gareth) or ‘Berners-Lee’.  These names are synonymous with success, imagination and creativity (again, not to be mistaken with Gareth). It sends a message to your staff that these are people you admire and whose characteristics you want to embrace.

You could even go one better and get the staff involved in a vote to decide your meeting room names.  Do bear in mind though, that while positive images can improve the mood of your workforce, the converse is also true. With this in mind, any names  derived from serial killers, natural disasters and the like, are probably best avoided.

Of course changing a meeting room name from ‘Room 5’ to the ‘Zuckerberg’ room overnight isn’t suddenly going to transform your business into a FTSE100 company. The effect will be more subtle than that. However, it can help to reinforce your identity or to convey a particular image that you want people to remember.

 

What have you called your meeting room? Tweet us @elevate2ltd


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"A business has to be involving, it has to be fun, and it has to exercise your creative instincts." – Sir Richard Branson

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