Imagine a meeting that you leave full of energy. Encounters with colleagues and talks that just greatly inspire you! Unfortunately, these kinds of meetings rather seem an exception than a rule. There are some worrying figures out there that underline the ineffectiveness of most of our meeting behavior. According to research conducted by American software company Altlassian:
Altlassian puts the cost of unnecessary meetings to US businesses, in terms of wasted salary hours, at $37 billion. In short, it seems your staff meetings are considered productivity killers.
We hear you thinking “Hold on, we can’t just stop having meetings then?”. Indeed, we can’t. Although, are you really sure? In most cases the answer indeed is no: we can’t stop hosting and attending meetings. We’ll therefore have to come up with different strategies. How to run a meeting that is an effective meeting on one hand and still a pleasant contact moment on the other hand? There isn’t a specific template to apply, but there are some pretty straightforward guidelines to follow. Start experimenting with a few of these ingredients and you’ll see your meetings change to the better!
Obviously, when there is more at stake, the more time you’d like to invest in preparing your meeting. And there’s more to prepare than you might have expected – and so, more to be successful at too!
Now that you’ve prepared and organized both the content and the meeting venue, it is time for the actual meeting. Factor “time” is one of the most important influencers on the success of your meeting. That’s why we take a closer look on clever time management tricks:
Attendees tend to lose focus after 45 minutes, so plan an hour and try to squeeze it into 45 minutes. Also, the moment of the day matters. Early morning meetings often loose time on people catching coffee, colleagues running late because of the traffic or colleagues not awake yet. Yet late in the morning people are most alert and therefore are a good moment to meet. However, don’t schedule it too close towards lunch time; The meeting might become unnecessary long because of colleagues wanting to use the lunchtime as extra meeting time. It remains to be seen how effective this extra time is and how strong the decisions will be.