There is nothing worse than finishing a day when you were locked in the conference room all day and feeling like you got nothing accomplished. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that any time in meetings is by definition not productive, but wasteful meetings are, well, wasteful. There are a few simple things you can do to increase the value your organization gets from meetings.
- Start by having a clear purpose for the meeting. Make sure that there is a specific goal for the meeting so you know when you are done developing the solution to your issue.
- Once you have a clear goal, write an appropriate agenda with the steps necessary to achieve that goal. Share this with the attendees ahead of time so that they can put thought into the issue before they get into the room.
- Once you know what you need to achieve, only set the meeting for as along as you think is necessary to achieve your goal. Don’t default to an hour long meeting for a fifteen minute problem. You would be amazed at how much more gets done in a shorter meeting when folks know they need to get it done before the meeting is over.
- Only invite the people who have to be there. Remember, the cost of the meeting is multiplied by the number of people who are there. If someone just needs to be aware of the results of the meeting, include them on the followup email with the notes from the meeting. They don’t need to sit through the whole thing.
By controlling these 4 simple things, you can save your organization a ton of time and money. You can also increase the productivity of the team by having shorter more productive meetings making them more available or their other responsibilities.
Mike Giuffrida has been working as a managing partner at Titan Strategic Partners based in Southington, Connecticut. The company’s expertise is in building and improving organizations from startups to established businesses.