Top tips for conducting effective meetings

Struggling to have productive meetings amongst the chaos of new projects, resolving issues and trying to achieve your business goals?

At Best Practice, we find that we are constantly having meetings, and trying to get people together. Now, as the CEO - and the guy running the financial health of the business- I understand that meetings can cost a lot. When you consider a large group of employees having a meeting, you’ve got to add up their hourly rates. When addressing an issue you can ask yourself: can I resolve this one on one? Or is it more efficient to deal with this as a group?

Due to the intensity of resources, it is important that there are a couple of fundamental rules that we run with here at Best Practice, which you could choose to have a look and potentially adopt into your own organization.

The first thing you should consider is if you will get a return on investment. If you’re calling a group of people together, that’s going to cost the business the hourly rates for those employees; they are stopping their normal course of production. When you're investing time to get people together, consider if you will get a return on that investment. To increase your potential return on investment, state what the potential outcomes are, and be extremely clear on the objectives of the meeting. This can be effectively done by sending a meeting request, and setting the title of the meeting as objective.

This will clearly communicate the main focus of the meeting.

The timing of the meetings are extremely critical, and one of our simple tips is to start on time. If you have said you’re going to start the meeting at 11:00 a.m for example, start at 11:00 a.m; make a habit of starting on time. Ensure there is enough time for people running between meetings to get there.

When meetings start on time and equally as important- finish on time, it creates discipline and a compliant behavior in your team. Starting razor sharp on time and finishing razor sharp on time, or even a couple of minutes early to be very respectful of everybody else's time will improve the quality of your meetings.

Otherwise, you're literally stealing people's time.

The second thing is to have a very clear agenda, and to make sure you capture the notable points. Why were you there? What was the objective? Were you identifying, solving and coming up with a set of actions? If so, be very clear in writing these actions down. This will help you conduct a short, sharp and productive meeting, which will allow people to get back on with their tasks.

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