Meetings can be both constructive and productive if combined with the right resources. Whether scheduling a small get-together with employees or conducting a corporate planning session, strategizing the process will ensure success. This article discusses effective strategies for conducting constructive meetings that produce results.
Make Objectives And Goals Clear
Before the meeting takes place, employees must understand the goals and objectives for the meeting. Define the objectives clearly rather than sending out a mass email for "status updates" or "company changes." Will the meeting inform employees about changes in management or in the scheduling process? Do you require input on a pertinent company issue to be discussed? Are there tasks needing improvement? Your meeting will be much more productive if all employees are on the same page and prepared to discuss the outlined and agreed upon topics.
Create A Schedule And Stick To It
Create a schedule that is properly documented and details the meeting agenda. To avoid confusion, and keep the meeting on track, be sure to provide a start and end time as well as a flexible timeline for every agenda item. Maintaining focus is critical to meeting success thus defining timelines for agenda items is key. Be sure to prepare a copy of the agenda for all meeting atendees.
Be A Leader
The meeting chairperson must maintain control of the meeting at all times including times when disagreements arise on passionate related topics. A strong leader takes charge and controls the meeting flow. A meeting can quickly become disruptive if one attendee is demanding the attention of the room without letting others have a say. A strong leader can direct movement and ensure the meeting sticks to the agenda and allows for collaborative discussion and constructive feedback resulting in fulfillment of all goals and meeting objectives.
Give Everyone A Chance To Speak
When your employees are given precise meeting objectives, they should come prepared with all of the resources needed to contribute to the success of the meeting. A meeting is an opportunity for employees and managers to communicate as a team and come up with decisions together. All employees should be able to constructively contribute meaningful ideas to any meeting in which they play a pivotal role. Employees should feel valued in the role that they play within the workplace especially when meeting input is acknowledged by the team. Happier employees lead to better productivity and an overall improved workforce
It’s common for meeting attendees to come away from the same meeting with very different interpretations of what went on. According to Forbes, meeting follow up is critical to reduce the risk of misinterpretations. Be sure to summarize the key elements of the meeting in an email format and send to all attendees within (24) hours of meeting date and time. Outline all key assignments, responsibilities, tasks delegated and assigned deadlines within the email summary. Follow up with additional meetings to task future results as needed.
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