How to Have a More Productive Meeting
We all know how easy it is to get bogged down in meetings, and it costs. It is estimated that $37 billion dollars is lost on unnecessary meetings each year. Here are tips on making your meetings more productive:
Are you having a meeting for the sake of a meeting?
When considering if you should have a meeting, ask yourself: what are the objectives or what exactly are you attempting to accomplish by calling them meeting? If you are having a meeting to get updates, to convey information, or because you feel it has been to long since you touched based with your team consider speaking to them one-on-one or sending out an email.
Only invite those who need to be there
Not everyone on the project or team may need to be there if you decide a meeting is the way to go. Only invite those who have something to offer for the objective of the meeting, and make sure that everyone invited can contribute. The reason they are at the meeting is to give their ideas and view points.
Make sure you state the purpose of the meeting
One of the best ways to do this is to send out the agenda or a memo before the meeting explaining what will be accomplished. This way the desired outcome of the meeting it known from the beginning. This helps employees know what is expected of them during the meeting and they know what kind of steps or action items will be expected of them when they leave.
Ban Electronic Devices
Yes, there are those who chose to take notes on their lap tops or tablets, but is everyone doing that? Banning electronic devices means that people will be focused on the task at hand and not checking email or working on other projects.
Keep it short and sweet
Long meetings mean that people get bored and unfocused. Try to shoot for 30 to 60 minute meetings. If you find that you must have longer be sure to schedule in breaks so the employees can take a moment to reorganize their thoughts and focus back in on the tasks.