The business meeting can be one of the most dreaded things about working in an office – but that’s usually because those meetings aren’t held the right way. Vague objectives, getting off-topic, feeling like nothing’s getting accomplished – sound familiar? Stop the madness. Here are 6 surefire tips for holding a business meeting that your employees won’t actively try to get out of.
Flickr user thetaxhaven
1. Pick Who Attends The Meeting Carefully
You might think that the fewer people that attend a meeting, the quicker it will go. Not true. If you don’t invite all the people needed to make decisions, you won’t get anything done. So if getting that merger planned means that you have to invite ALL the department heads, do it.
2. Start On Time
Going to meetings interrupts your day. Period. Even if it’s totally necessary. Everyone’s got a bunch of stuff to do, and having to plan around meetings is kind of a drag. So don’t let the start time of the meeting lag. Keep things efficient. When employees don’t feel like their schedules are being respected, they’re less likely to contribute to the meeting.
3. Make The Goals Of The Meeting Clear
It’s tempting to call a meeting to simply address a big problem or plan for a big project. But those lofty goals often take more than one meeting, so simply trying to squeeze the whole thing into one meeting won’t work. Plan out the specific goals for each meeting instead, and then the meetings won’t seem so overwhelming.
4. Don’t Let One Person Steal The Meeting
We all know them. Those people who always ask a million questions about every single detail and make the meeting go twice as long as it’s supposed to? While there’s nothing wrong with asking questions, one person monopolizing the meeting makes everyone else weary (and definitely resentful of the person in question).
5. End On Time
This one’s just as important as starting on time. Even if the meeting is going well, having it run long gets in the way of everything else your employees have to get done – and will quickly turn the meeting from productive to stressed and strained.
6. Reiterate the Outcome Of The Meeting
This is especially important if the meeting involved assigning tasks to various employees. Once the meeting is over, summarize what was decided and assigned out to people and send it in an email to everyone. That way it’s all clear to every attendee what the outcome of the meeting was, and also makes each employee accountable if they try to flake out.
What other methods for holding a great business meeting do you have? Tell us in the comments below!