Meetings are a big part of business life these days. Some are very useful. Others can be a waste of time and energy. Behind every meeting, there is a kind of psychology. Get it right, and your meetings will be more meaningful. Here’s a ten-point check list to help you do just that.
1. Ask yourself if the meeting is really necessary. Could the same result be achieved with memos and emails?
2. Check with attendees to find a mutually agreeable meeting time that doesn’t affect the workflow of someone’s whole day.
3. Don’t be ruled by specific time slots. If the meeting needs to be long, let it run. If not, cut it short.
4. Discuss the agenda at the start to assign what is most important. Use the agenda to attain defined goals and don’t deviate from it.
5. Get involved. Don’t look or act bored. If you disagree with something, say so. Don’t sit there bottling it up until the meeting has ended.
6. Appoint a good chairperson who will invite discussion in a logical way, without repetition or deviation from the subject in hand, and who knows when it’s time to move to next business.
7. Think about whether the meeting should be conducted sitting down or standing up. Sit-down meetings might last longer than stand-up meetings, but be no more productive.
8. If you want to add a little humour into the proceedings, do it subtly. Don’t get yourself a name as someone who fails to take things seriously.
9. If the meeting involves a group of strangers, some or all of whom have not met before, take time before the start to meet and socialise a little.
10. Ask for feedback and act on it for the next meeting.
To address these issues and more, NFS Technology Group has introduced a new series of three White Papers under the general heading of The Psychology of Booking and Running Meetings. A supplemental to part 3, Ten Tips for Better Meetings is available now. Download it here.