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Breakfast boom: two-thirds find morning meetings more beneficial

Are you a morning person? When it comes to meetings, it turns out that increasingly the answer for many of us is a resounding yes.

Almost two-thirds (64.4 per cent) of people agree that breakfast meetings provide more beneficial outcomes compared to meetings held later in the day (e.g. over lunch, over dinner), according to a new survey conducted on behalf of Searcys by www.onepulse.com.

The survey of 502 respondents, all London-based, found that 40 per cent find it easier to concentrate in the morning compared to later in the day.

More than 20 per cent of respondents said that mornings have now become the go-to time for meetings, while almost one-quarter of respondents admit they’d be less likely to cancel a breakfast meeting than they would lunch or dinner.

So what could be the reason for the shift towards morning meetings? There are a few reasons I can think of that could be contributing factors to the trend.

First up, busy schedules. Many of us simply don’t have time for a long leisurely lunch meeting any more. When you factor in travelling times, a lunch meeting can take out a large proportion of your working day. Just last week I had lunch with a contact – I travelled most of the morning to get there, the lunch overran, and then I spent most of the afternoon getting home. Whereas with a breakfast meeting, you’re travelling in the early morning – when you probably would have been commuting to the office anyway, and it’s much easier to pipe up with “Well, I really ought to be getting into the office now…” to bring things to a close. A breakfast meeting is less of an impingement on our precious time.

Secondly, the booze element. “Shall we have a glass of wine? I’ll get a bottle, shall I?” Whatever our best intentions, lunch meetings can escalate quickly into Bacchanalian excess. Whereas at breakfast, no one is suggesting cracking into the Vino Collapso. Booze for breakfast is still very much taboo in polite society, making a breakfast meeting much safer territory for those of us who want to go to a meeting and still be able to function afterwards.

Finally, the food itself. Breakfast tends to be more informal finger food, lending itself to meetings much better than other meals. It’s much easier to chat over a coffee and a croissant than it is over a plate of steak and chips. Have you ever tried taking notes while also wielding a knife and fork? I don’t recommend it.

If you can think of other reasons for the rise fo breakfast meetings, please email me  – I’d love to hear from you.