Meetings, meetings, meetings – they’re a fact of economic life, yet how frequently are they an effective use of your time and effort? Many of us dread them with good reason. I understand a hugely successful businessman who once explained the secret of excellent meetings isn’t to let people take a seat – I’m still unsure whether he was joking or otherwise!
But a meeting is the greatest way of communicating. Aside from removing all of the chairs out of your meeting room, what else could you do to expedite proceedings? They are my fundamental guidelines:
1. Think about timing – nobody I understand is exactly in sparkling form soon after lunch or late within the afternoon.
2. Set plans and circulate it to any or all participants a minimum of a day before. Tthere shouldn’t be excuse for arriving unprepared.
3. Always start and finished on time – don’t interrupt in conclusion for latecomers.
4. If you aren’t going to finish inside an hour, take a rest every 45 minutes or everyone is going to be nodding off.
5. Have clearly defined roles agreed beforehand. You’ll need someone who can firmly but tactfully keep things on the right track – do not let the discussion to slip into gossip in order to go off in a tangent. Also anyone to take minutes – concise minutes – and distribute them afterwards.
6. The whole idea of a meeting is ACTION so do not let people to leave without making their action points clear.
7. Do you will need to attend whatsoever? If you feel you’ve got nothing to contribute, request the minutes to become sent to you.