- Set up an effective meeting
- Prepare an agenda
- End with actionable items
Your day starts bright and early with a work meeting, and you have about five other meetings lined up. Unfortunately, a few of the sessions are back-to-back. You know that some of the meetings will probably go over their allotted time, and some could honestly just have been an email. So, how do you make the most out of these meetings?
There are ways to have efficient meetings that all attendees should be aware of, and especially the host of the meeting. Following these steps below will help give all of the attendees the initiative to move forward with the following deliverables and feel confident about the next steps.
Setting Up The Meeting
First, it’s essential to evaluate whether a meeting is needed or if an email will suffice. For instance, if you require definitive answers, such as statistics, or you need a quick update, it’s safe to send an email.
If you realize a meeting is essential to move forward, you should do the following.
- Include the purpose of the meeting in the description of the invite.
- Send a schedule within 24 hours of the meeting so the attendees can further understand the topics. By having a plan, everyone can remain on task.
- If any attendees need to bring necessary items to the meeting, be sure to share this information with those responsible before the meeting and give them a proper amount of time to prepare.
During The Meeting
You’ve knocked out the pre-meeting checklist, and now it’s time for an efficient meeting!
Below are actionable items to make sure the meeting remains on task.
- Your meeting should start on time. Starting the meeting on time respects everyone’s time, and if there’s someone late, they can receive the meeting notes afterward to catch up.
- Every attendee should have a role during the meeting. Everyone can remain on task and be a part of the meeting by having roles instead of being a passive observer. For instance, there should be someone taking notes to share with all attendees after the session and actionable next steps with the person responsible.
- Direct all off-the-cuff conversations back to the agenda and utilize the schedule sent before the meeting so all attendees can reference it.
- When your meeting has 10-5 minutes to spare at the end, let the attendees know that the meeting is ending promptly at the allotted end time, and if there needs to be a follow-up, it can be scheduled. It’s preferable to give attendees the last five minutes of a meeting to prepare for other sessions on their schedule or to grab a cup of coffee, etc.
After The Meeting
You’ve made it through the meeting, and believe it or not, and there are only a couple more things to do.
- Ensure that meeting notes are sent to all attendees within a few hours after the meeting. The meeting notes should include the following steps, a written record of who is responsible for the next deliverables.
- Take a deep breath and get ready for your next meeting!
Usually, meetings can be draining, but you’ll feel productive and ready to conquer your next one with these tips! SPECTRAFORCE has many helpful blog posts to help you throughout your workday or searching for a job. For six self-care tips for Zoom meetings, click here.