“People who enjoy meetings should not be in charge of anything.” -Thomas Sowell
As we all know, business meetings often take up valuable work time. In a TLNT article, Laura Stack addresses that meetings are not something you can completely escape, and you may never enjoy them; however, there are eight ways that can help make them more tolerable.
- Decide whether the meeting is even necessary. Why call a full meeting if you can handle the issue with a few phone calls or emails?
- Get started on time. Don’t start over because someone was late. They can take notes from a colleague later or find out later.
- Use a facilitator. Have someone in charge of making sure the meetings start and end on time, keeping the discussion on topic, acknowledging speakers, soliciting opinions, and keeping a few people from dominating the meeting.
- Change the venue. Maybe having a laid back meeting at a local Starbucks will spark creative thinking.
- Provide food. People feel better when there’s something to munch on. Provide yummy foods, as well as healthy ones.
- Make the agenda crystal clear. Why are you meeting, and what do you expect to accomplish as a result? Distribute the organized agenda beforehand, and clarify responsibilities for the future.
- Be very picky about who attends. Don’t invite someone to a meeting if it barely applies to that person. If they need a general idea of what happened, send them a copy of the notes.
- Schedule breaks for long meetings. A good rule of thumb is a 5-10 minute break per hour to stretch and take care of biological needs.
Note: Icebreakers just take up valuable time, and routine meetings aren’t supposed to be fun—just necessary. If “team-building” was a goal of the meeting, it may be more appropriate.
Read the full article here.