5 Must Haves for Productive Meeting
I'll be honest, I spend far too much time in meetings these days. And while for the most part they are vitally important, some of them are not ran well by the organizer. A well ran meeting can boost productiveness and help attendees and stakeholders be more clear about their action items and duties.
Here are my five tips for having the most productive meeting:
1. Make a Plan... Ahead of Time
Set and objective for the meeting and come up with an agenda for how to best use your time productively. Share the agenda ahead of time with your meeting guests so they know what to expect and how to best prepare in advance.
2. Be Selective with Attendees
Everyone's days are so busy so only invite people who are absolutely necessary to making this meeting a success. There is a weird misconception that you need to invite everybody and anybody who is remotely related to the topic so they don't feel left out. However, with most people, this isn't the case. Most people are more interested in using their time in the most productive ways. So if you don't need them don't invite them so they feel obligated to attend.
3. Stay on Track
You already planned an agenda so stick to your allotted time for each subject that needs to be covered. Keep side conversations to a minimum to keep others from being distracted and make note of any other issue that will need to be revisited at another meeting. As the leader, keep your meeting moving on time and remind attendees when they are getting off track.
4. Keep Meeting Minutes
As the meeting leader it is important that you keep good notes (or designate a note taker) of what is happening in the meeting. Note any resolutions that happen, all assigned tasks and the due date, plus notes that will help you and the other attendees in the future. After the meeting, clean up the notes and send it out to all the participants in a timely manner.
5. End on Time
If you stuck to your agenda like your promised you should be ending on time anyway but sometimes the content of your meeting becomes a lot more tricky than you originally thought. More discussions are needed and it takes longer to move through the agenda. That's ok! However it is important to end on time and be respectful of your attendees time. Once you're at the five-minute mark, politely interject into the meeting and summarize what you've discussed, what still needs to be discussed, and any action items as well as a plan for keeping the conversation going at a later time. Although they may not immediately speak up, your attendees may have other meetings to go to or have deadlines to meet. Be respectful of their time.
Is there anything you would add to this list? Leave your suggestions and meeting must-haves in the comments section!