Walk the Talk

Recently the TOWARD team piloted a Lifestyle Assessment Service. Following 5 days of wearing a heart monitor we got reports and a coaching session on our levels of stress, exercise and recovery. Challenged by the disturbingly sedentary scores on my exercise chart, one of the commitments I made was to try to build more exercise into a typical working day. I found this interesting because I have had similar conversations with senior executives in recent coaching sessions. We share the challenge of how to build more physical activity into a very busy, office based working day. Popping out to the gym at lunchtime is simply not an option and an extended working day followed by a long commute often rules out the evenings too. Exercise gets reduced to a weekend activity. The challenge is to try to integrate more physical activity into my working week.

One solution is the walking meeting. According to the latest research it’s not just good for physical fitness. A recent study by Stanford University (2014) found that walking boosts creative inspiration. Researchers examined creativity levels of people while they walked versus while they sat and found that a person’s creative output increased by an average of 60% when walking.

A walking meeting is simply a meeting that takes place during a walk instead of in an office, boardroom, or coffee shop. It’s as simple as two or three people going for a walk while they discuss the business of the meeting. In my experience walking meetings can lead to more honest conversations and can be bore creative and productive than traditional sit-down meetings.

So, if you haven’t tried a walking meeting, why not get out of your chair and experiment and see if you can walk the talk!

Tony Macaulay