To keep people awake, engaged and interested in a meeting, have all participants stand up.
You will quickly find that standing for the entire meeting will make people think on their feet and be more alert.
Researchers at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, report that groups working together on a project while standing are measurably more engaged and less territorial than while seated.
Standing engages more muscles to pump oxygen to the brain. It encourages listening and makes it more awkward to disengage by checking email or cell phones.
Standing alters how people interact and relate to each other.
If someone becomes long winded, the uncomfortable guests will usually shift around noticeably enough (versus fidgeting in their chairs) that the speaker will wrap up his remarks.
Meetings are notorious for dragging on; people will not want to stand in one place for too long, so it will encourage collaboration.
Standing is free; it takes up less space and will be a refreshing change to stale meeting formats.