You are stuck in another meeting. Your coworker next to you is still stuck on Level 54 of Candy Crush Saga. And you? Well, you’re stuck with a stale Donut and another hour of this meeting. What even is the point of this? Actually, office meetings are a crucial part to running a business, because they can stimulate new, innovative ideas, help develop strategy plans, and create better relationships among team members! But… this only happens if they are executed well. Meetings can be real productivity killers when they are poorly run. The price to pay for a bad meeting can be pretty big too. Lost work opportunities, wasted money, neglected time, and depleted motivation all add up. So, how do you create effective and engaging meetings? We’re going to tell you!
It’s All About the Timing
The best way to start and end a meeting is on-time! By setting up a schedule, you are respecting everyone’s’ productivity time and allowing for employees to smoothly transition between their other meetings with a clear head. And if you provide a clear agenda before the meeting, employees, clients, and co-workers can gather their thoughts on the topics to be covered. This helps prevent excessive rambling about topics that have literally nothing to do with your company. It’s amazing what sort of random things make their way into the conversation about productivity, every single week.
Plus, you should decide when the best time for a meeting to be held is. Early in the morning? Midday? Late afternoon? Try getting input from the people who need to be in the meeting. This can help you get an idea of what time period works best for most people and it can narrow down the list of people to only include those who NEED to be present. No one wants to sit through a meeting they have no purpose in. I repeat, no one.
Technology? Sometimes it’s Helpful!
Technology has a tendency to become more of a hassle when you need it to properly function. The best way to use tech is sparingly. Why? Well, it creates two probable outcomes. The first outcome is that the technology works great and is a helpful tool in teaching, reviewing, or creating ideas. The second is that everyone is so focused on their devices or trying to get the technology to cooperate that they forget what the point of the meeting even was in the first place. It’s happened before. Moral of the story is that it might be better to leave the cellphones turned off and use a computer-projector combo for short presentations and notetaking. And then have a backup plan, because projectors almost always overheat or need a lightbulb to be replaced the minute you need to use one. They’re just convenient like that!
Communication & Delegation: What’s that?
To start off, everyone needs to know what the overall mission is for the meeting. Then, people need to know and understand their purpose in said mission. Meetings are great, because they “encourage division of labor” so that a single project gets completed efficiently. Now that’s what we call delegation. And, a great way to make sure everyone knows their action item, or assigned task, is by having each person recap what they learned and what their next step is in order to achieve the overall mission. Now people even know who they need to work with to accomplish their tasks! Boom, Communication! Productivity is going to be through the roof!
Meetings don’t have to be a monotonous experience. There are many ways to make them more interesting, and sometimes even a little fun. But the best meetings are ones that are productive, clear-cut, and short! Meetings are not the time for Candy Crush under the table. They are the time to do create a healthy work team, new ideas, and better strategy plans. You’d be surprised how much more can get done during and after an effective meeting!