Great tips for more successful meetings
Meetings are a huge part of many people's workdays. They are important to the development of businesses and employees alike. But many meetings aren’t as effective as they could be. A well-structured discussion with clearly defined goals will help to make your meetings more productive.
A productive meeting is a beneficial meeting. Making sure that there is a clear purpose for each meeting is essential. Is it simply an informational meeting or is participant involvement expected? Inform the participants of the exact purpose of the meeting and what is required, so that they understand fully what is expected of them beforehand, allowing them time to prepare. Ensure that each participant has a distinct role during the meeting.
Be sure to start the meetings on time even if a colleague is late. Remember to designate someone to document what is talked about during the meeting. These notes should then be distributed to the participants after the meeting. Start a ‘no mobile phone' policy if possible, as this will help to avoid unnecessary noise and interruptions.
Choosing the right ‘type’ of meeting
Sometimes we resist change. It’s easier that way. But quite often this is not for the good of the company and workers therein. Many workplaces simply assume that all meetings should take place around the conference table, regardless of the content of the meeting. But remember that there are alternatives! Below we’ll take a look at some of them.
Standing meetings are ideal for quick daily status updates. The meetings are short and efficient where multiple daily decisions can be made. When we stand up, we become more alert and more physical active compared to when we are sitting down, which is great for our physical health. Investing in a height adjustable conference table which is suitable for both sitting and standing meetings could be ideal for your workplace.
Taking a ‘walk-and-talk’ outdoors is great for a deep, relaxed conversation in a small group of workers. Moreover, it is perfect for getting those creative juices flowing! Research shows that we think more creatively when we’re outdoors. During the walk you get fresh air, light and a natural energy boost. The walk-and-talk doesn’t require any special equipment, but please be sure to wear comfy shoes!
Traditional meetings where you sit around a table suitable for formal meetings. Such meetings often have a President and a clear agenda. If the meeting is well structured, it can be both effective and time saving. But this type of meeting can stifle creativity and so there is a risk that employee participation will be reduced.
Creative meetings help you to find new perspectives, solutions and opportunities. As with all types of meetings, it is important that there is a clearly stated purpose, but skip the agenda. Creative meetings are about interacting in a free-flowing way, exchanging ideas, thinking outside the box and bouncing ideas off each other. Use whiteboards, post-it notes or other tools to visualise ideas. It’s a great idea to take breaks and change the meeting locations, creative meetings are all about being spontaneous.