Are you Making the Most of Your Meetings? Ideas 4-6:

1 May

4. State the purpose of the meeting

 Before getting the meeting underway, make sure everyone understands why they are there and what you hope to have as deliverables by the end of the meeting.  Decide if the purpose of the meeting is to have everyone gathered together to solve a particular problem, brain storm, make a decision or number of decisions, exchange information and ideas in order to build a strategy, learn a new skill, or evaluate an event as part of a debriefing exercise.

 5. Be sure to prioritize the topics

 Put the most important items first, that way you’re guaranteed to have time to cover the most important topics.

 6. Keep everyone focused – Assign a lead person

 The lead person makes sure that team members stick to the topic at hand, and he/she monitors the amount of time to be devoted to each of the topic areas covered.  To make the lead’s job easier, try posting the agenda on the wall, along with the amount of time allotted for each item.  That way, everyone can play an active role in keeping the meeting productive.

 The lead can also keep the long-winded team member from eating up too much time.  Anyone who takes up too much time on the floor expressing his/her ideas can easily be reminded to cut the conversation short with the use of a discrete signal.  Leads have been known to give a warning signal first to the individual.  What’s used as a signal is not as important as is everyone’s understanding of what the expectation is and that they abide by it.


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