How to run effective meetings – 8 Tips for Running More Effective Meetings

How to run effective meetings” Answer is here

today I want to talk to you about how to run an efficient meeting. Now meetings can be one of the biggest wastes of time in office culture and I would wager that probably 5 out of 10 meetings that you sit in are either unnecessary or at the very least inefficiently run. So, how do you make sure all your meetings are productive and efficient? Check out these 8 tips on how to run a perfect meeting.

#1 figure out if the meeting is even necessary in the first place

how to run effective meetings
how to run effective meetings

How to run effective meetingsSome things by their very nature just not good use of group time. So, if you’re trying to get feedback on an extensive document, for instance, something like that might be better handled offline. The idea that you’re going to be able to get meaningful review and comments during the meeting from 5 or more people is pretty ridiculous. On the other hand, if items are sensitive or require significant back and forth or clarification, they can be a great use of meeting time.

#2 ensure that only the key people are invited to the meeting

effective meeting strategies
effective meeting strategies

Now remember, meetings are resource intensive. They take up people’s time. And most people mistakenly think that if you schedule a one-hour meeting on the calendar and say the meeting is not productive then you’ve only lost one hour of time, but in fact, you have to look at it in terms of the number of people-hours exhausted. So if you have five people in your meeting and you’ve had a one hour meeting that’s not one hour of wasted time. That’s five hours of wasted time. And from there it’s pretty easy to quantify how much a meeting is costing either your company or your clients, depending on how your business is set up. Just multiply those person hours by the salaries or your billable rate. Now it’s tough to do this one because it sometimes can ruffle feathers when you have to either disinvite people or leave people out, but the fair way to do it is to assign delegates from each department so that you have one person representing from each group or department that their job is to represent that team and then filter that information back to them make sure that their interests are represented, and so on.

#3 set expectations with meeting attendees.

effective meetings guidelines
effective meetings guidelines

Have a clear objective and an agenda for the meeting. You really need to think about what the meeting purpose is. Do you want to decide something? Do you want to gain buy-off on something? Do you want to get input on something? You need to have a clear idea of what the objective of the meeting is. And more importantly, you need to actually communicate that to the people who are in the meeting so that when they get there or even before, ideally, they know why they’re there. Now for shorter meetings of 30 minutes, or maybe even an hour, a written agenda isn’t necessary in the meeting for everyone, but beyond an hour you absolutely need, not only in a written agenda that sent out ahead of time, but one that’s actually in front of the participants during the meeting. And on that note don’t beholden to typical meeting times of 30 minutes or an hour just because that’s what your calendar tool automatically sets. You may need a face-to-face meeting but it doesn’t mean that you need a full 30 minutes Maybe a 15-minute touch base where you just quickly get in the room look each other in the eyes and decide something.

#4 this is a tip that I really appreciate, is that the meeting actually starts when the invite is sent out, not when the physical meeting starts.

effective meetings guidelines
effective meetings guidelines

There’s a real opportunity to help make a meeting way more productive if you learn appropriate ways to engage your invitees even before the meeting happens. So, for example, let’s say that you have something that you want to get people’s feedback on. Say you have a 25-page slide deck you want to walk people through. Now, do you think you’re going to be more successful in getting feedback if you schedule a 30-minute meeting and just walk through it and give people five minutes to comment? Or do you think it’s going to be more successful if you actually you know give people a week heads up, send that deck out a week ahead of time, set really clear expectations that they need to provide feedback and discussion in that meeting? Now, go a step further and ask them to not only read that deck but to provide feedback half a day before or a day before the meeting. Not only do you make the meeting time really productive, if you do end up having a meeting, but, assuming that everyone has similar comments or everyone’s aligned on feedback for that thing that you were going to discuss, originally, you may not even need to have a meeting.

#5 you may want to consider pre-wiring meetings that involve important or particularly sensitive topics.

conducting effective meetings
conducting effective meetings

I’ve done this before but I never really knew the word for it. And essentially the idea is if during a meeting you want to always get alignment, you want to get collaboration. You don’t want any surprises you want it, you don’t have any land mines, essentially. So, if the topic that you’re dealing with is a particularly sensitive one or particularly critical, you may want to consider using that pre-meeting time like we were talking about earlier, but approaching some of the key players who are going to be in the meeting and trying to gain alignment even before the meeting happens. It can just be a quick check-in, a little drop by or drive by and you kind of preview the issue or the topic or the point of view that you’re going to share in the meeting and get their thoughts on it. Because if you can kind of hash out any issues that they might have, get alignment from them ahead of time, it’s going to go a long way in terms of making for a smooth meeting later.

#6 actively manage your meetings.

effective meetings ppt
effective meetings ppt

So, even if you’ve gone to the trouble of putting together a perfect agenda you still have to actively manage that meeting to make sure that you stay on track. Now of course if real magic is happening and there’s some great ideas and great synergy that’s happening in the meeting at the time, you don’t want to snuff that out necessarily. But a lot of times, and I’m sure you’re familiar with this, people will bring up tangential ideas that, sure, it’s a great idea but it’s kind of off topic and off agenda. So, the trick for that is actually using the parking lot method, where you can just use, you know, a corner of the whiteboard or if you have one of those flip chart sheet things. Just capture that in a parking lot and get them to focus again on the agenda. So, your job as meeting facilitator is to not only make sure that you stay on topic and stay on track, but to make sure that you’re getting equal representation from the attendees in the room. And that means that you do have to interrupt sometimes, but you can do that delicately, though. So, for instance you could say something like, “Listen Bill, you made some really really good points here, I actually want to hear what Jane has to say about this as well, and then we can maybe come back to some of your ideas at the end, okay?”

#7 agree on the next steps that need to be taken during the meeting and then document them.

effective meetings guidelines
effective meetings guidelines

So, as meeting organizer you need to be the one to say, “Okay guys, so I just want to make sure that I’m clear, Bill is going to follow up on this, right? Right Bill?” And then following the meeting, what you want to do is actually send out a quick meeting summary and document those next steps and who is responsible. It really goes a long way in making that meeting time really actionable and productive.

#8 Bring donuts

effective meeting strategies
effective meeting strategies

So, I used to bring donuts to meetings all the time, and actually there was one client that I did it with in particular. It was so consistent that it started being this running joke with them that the marketing director would say, “Oh, I see Kyle and I start salivating.” And so I would always bring this pink box of donuts and it was kind of like bringing a gift each time. And it was always exciting because they knew they were going to get their sugar rush when it came. So, we always had a good laugh and then it was just kind of a nice way to start each meeting with a smile. And with your internal team, yeah sure, you could look at it as bribing them with sugar. But I’m telling you, it’s amazing what people will do for donuts. So, remember not every topic is worthy of a meeting, but if you do need a meeting it’s critical that you follow these tips to make sure that all of your meetings are as efficient and productive as possible. And if there’s other tips and tactics you’ve used to make meetings more productive, let me know in the comments

Check out the source video that will more help you

how to run effective meetings | effective meeting strategies
effective meetings guidelines | conducting effective meetings
effective meetings ppt

how to run effective meetings | effective meeting strategies
effective meetings guidelines | conducting effective meetings
effective meetings ppt

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