Get More from Meetings

Ever feel like meetings are taking over your entire day? Well, you’re not alone. In his book How to Manage Meetings, Alan Barker says that most people, working in organisations, spend 60 per cent of their time in meetings. And love them or loathe them, meetings are an essential part of most businesses. They are crucial for getting things done, provide structure within a company and offer an environment in which to discuss problems or ideas. But when meetings aren’t managed properly, they take up valuable time without achieving any worthwhile results. So how can you make sure the meetings in your organisation are effective?

Before you hold your next meeting, think about the following:

Who needs to be there?
Having too many people at a meeting can cause discussions to ramble on for too long and it becomes difficult to make decisions. Limit the number of people at the meeting to only those that really need to be there.

Who’s in charge?
Even if there is no formal hierarchy between the people attending the meeting, it’s important that one person is in charge of running the meeting to keep it progressing efficiently.

What’s on the agenda?
Make sure you have an agenda of points to cover so that the meeting achieves its objectives and doesn’t wander off course.

Action points
It’s what happens after the meeting that’s often the important thing. Make sure someone keeps a note of all the action points that are agreed in the meeting so that they can be followed up afterwards.

Limit the time
Let everyone know what time the meeting will end and stick to it.

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