Business meetings can foster collaboration, innovation and action – yet most employees gasp with frustration at the thought of another meeting.
Stop encouraging meeting mediocrity and, instead, use every meeting to make things happen with these tips:
- Ask yourself, does this meeting really need to happen?
- Select participants wisely – does everyone really need to be in the meeting?
- Provide an agenda to participants in advance.
- Clearly determine and communicate the intended meeting outcomes so that participants understand the purpose and benefits of meeting.
- If attendees are required to review information in advance, send it to them prior to the meeting; do not waste time reviewing documents during the meeting.
- Establish standard meeting etiquette that is used consistently. For example, start and end on time and give everyone the opportunity to contribute to the discussion.
- Instill an action-driven culture even during meetings.
- Document assigned actions and the person or team responsible for each action; everyone needs to leave with meaningful things to accomplish.
- Communicate when actions must be completed; follow up on each action to ensure completion.
- Have someone take notes – ideally a support person so the CEO or executive team can think rather than write or type.
- Encourage collaboration but stay focused, otherwise meetings will always take up more time than allotted.
- Recap actions at the end and then send a summary to everyone within half an hour.