Although it is rare nowadays to step into a coffee shop without seeing at least one meeting in full swing, flexible working for some UK executives can be more of an intrepid experience.
In new research by global workspace company Regus, more than 4,000 business professionals were asked the strangest place where they had ever had a business meeting, with the oddest venues emerging as an aircraft hangar, an old railway tunnel, a boiler room, a maggot farm and a rowing boat on the Thames.
As one respondent who spent a chilly hour-and-a-half meeting with a business associate in a boarded-up building put it, “It wasn’t very comfortable, but a decision had to be made quite urgently. I’m not sure whether it was down to the location, but some interesting ideas were knocked around in there.”
More common grab-a-meeting venues seem to be car parks, cars, coffee shops and pubs, while planes and airports are also popular choices, reflecting the international nature of business today. At least one person reported having a business meeting on their bed while another unfortunate individual was subjected to a meeting in the back of an ambulance.
On the upside, nightclubs, beaches and saunas also feature more than once, showing that business meetings aren’t always such hard work.
Morag Alabaster, UK rirector of meetings at Regus commented: “The strange places that people find themselves in for business meetings, from beaches to abandoned buildings show just how open-minded and flexible people have become in the world of business.
“We offer the country’s largest network of meeting rooms that are available from as little as an hour – which might be a slightly less adventurous option than some of the venues chosen by our survey respondents but do improve the chances of a productive meeting!”
Top 10 strangest meeting places:
1. Rugby pitch
3. Storage cupboard
4. Dental surgery
5. Chip shop
6. Chinese bath house
7. Fish processing plant
8. A caravan
9. Beside a sewage pump
10. A space rocket factory