We've all been to those meetings that were a complete waste of time... And not to mention those meetings to plan more meetings! So how do you host interactive catch ups that are beneficial to all attendees? Here are our top 5 tips on hosting effective meetings.
1. Plan an agenda - don't wing it!
You're busy, I know. The easy option may be to arrive and rely on your memory to cover all aspect of the meeting which you have stored away in your head. But this comes across disjointed, unprofessional and not to mention, unproductive. Key issues get missed. Conversations go off track. Staff members aren't as interactive. So make sure you go in with a plan and stick to it.
2. Start your meeting on time
No, not 5 minutes late, not 10 minutes late. On time, every time. Having a reputation for starting on times means those attending make the extra effort to turn up on time, eager and ready to go.
Make it a fun rule that the last person to arrive is the note taker. Watch all your attendees race to the meeting to avoid being the last person there.
3. Keep it short, sweet and on topic
Your team mates will love you for this. Having a short, allocated time frame means you can quickly and effectively discuss exactly what you came in to address. Not only will the meeting be productive but it won't put you and the rest of your team back half a day. Having an assigned agenda is key here.
4. Remove distractions
Having everyone being fully present can be a tough ask, especially if there is a customer support aspect to your business. Ask all attendees (where possible) not to check emails, social media, or step out for phone calls. Removing distractions keeps the meeting focused on its topic and moving at a good pace.
Must read: How to increase productivity at work
5. Follow up
More often than not people come away from the same meeting with very different interpretations of what actually went on. Make it a rule the next day to send out an email noting the tasks given and assigned deadlines. That way there is no confusion about who's doing what and when work items need to be completed by.
Meetings can be very insightful and productive. But you (yes you!) as the host needs to take the right actions to make them effective meetings.
Time is money, and meetings are expensive! So make them worthwhile.
What are your tips for hosting an effective meeting?