In the US, there are 25 million meetings in a day. That means 15% of the company’s time is normally spent on unproductive meetings. Meetings can both be productive and destructive.
For starters, it’s the perfect session for the project manager and his team to discuss the project goals and tasks. When tasks and goals are clear, the team is more motivated to work. Meetings are destructive too as they can bring productivity to a halt.
Want to ensure that your meetings don’t turn out to be black holes with no outcomes? Looking for meeting preparation tips that will help you organize productive meetings?
Here are the top 10 effective tips on meeting preparation for a productive season.
1. Be Prepared
A rule of thumb in meeting preparation is to spend more time planning the meeting. By doing so, you ensure that all the details of the meeting are well taken care of. Remember, being ill-prepared will leave you embarrassed.
2. Have Clear Objectives
Have clear objectives for the meeting and share them with the attendees. Even if you have one agenda or goal to discuss, share it with the attendees before the meeting. Making it clear beforehand will help you meet your objectives.
3. Have a Timeline
An agenda with no timeline will result in wastage of time. By the end of the day, nothing of substance will have come out of the meeting. Want to meet your objectives?
Have a timeline for each agenda and stick to it.
4. Arrange the Seating in the Meeting
If you are the facilitator of the meeting, all eyes should be on you. That means arranging the seating to ensure all participants are facing you. It is also important to ensure they are facing the projector or whiteboard in use.
5. Review the List of Attendees
Want to make smart decisions? Review the list of attendees. Are there unfamiliar names? Reading through the list eliminates surprises in the meeting room.
6. Prewire the Meeting
The aim of a meeting is to discuss agendas and come up with decisions that will affect a project. If you don’t want to surprise other attendees in regards to your decision, prewire them before it starts. While this is time-consuming, it improves your chances of success.
7. Keep the List of Attendees Short
One of the most important points in any meeting preparation guide is to invite a few people needed for the purpose. By keeping the list of attendees short, you help to ensure that all attendees take part. Remember, in any meeting, you will have extroverts and introverts.
8. Identify Potential Issues Early
When you prepare for a meeting, identify potential issues early. Once you identify the potential issues, remove them. Doing so saves you time and can help you to speed up decision making in the meeting.
9. Assign Specific Roles to the Attendees
It is important to assign a specific role to the participants. For instance, you are the facilitator. You can assign another attendee the role of a timekeeper, scribe or contributor. Another specific role you can assign is that of an expert.
10. Choose a Decision-Making Process
Want to achieve a clear outcome? Choose the decision-making process. You can select group consensus, majority vote or leader choice.
The latter is the fastest approach, especially in a crisis. Problem is, you risk having some ideas go unheard.
Meeting Preparation Tips to Avoid Wasting Time
There are a few more meeting preparation tips to avoid wasting time. Take notes, appoint someone to take the minutes and make sure everyone takes part. Don’t forget to follow up after the meeting to come up with the best resolution.
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