3 tips to make meetings more efficient26 Jun 2014
It can be the absolute bane of the workday. You’re diligently working away when a calendar alert pops up – you have a meeting in ten minutes and you know the rest of the afternoon is a complete write-off.
Beyond disrupting the workflow, you know this half-hour team talk is likely to drag, as distractions and inefficiency cause the meeting to stretch far beyond the allocated time.
As much as we’d prefer to do without them, meetings are often an important requirement in business. Whether you’re pulling together a team to talk about new projects or debriefing departments on previous performance, meetings can be an effective communication tool.
However, to ensure this necessary evil doesn’t begin to impact on productivity, it is crucial that efficiency and time management skills are considered in the planning and execution of all meetings. Here are three key time management tips to help you start and finish business gatherings on time.
Allocate specific times for the meetings
If corporate huddles are a regular occurrence in your workplace, you should ensure that attendees know when to expect the disruption so they can plan accordingly. This means allocating a specific time or day when certain meetings are held each week, such as always holding a team debriefing at 2pm on the third Thursday of the month.
Send out agendas prior to the meeting
To ensure everyone is prepared and ready to go, the agenda should be prepared and circulated at least 24 hours prior to the event. Even smaller gatherings require agendas so attendees can understand the purpose and direction of the meeting.
Start on time (no matter what)
Don’t wait for people to turn up: start every meeting on time. By delaying the beginning of the meeting, you are effectively guaranteeing that the end time will also be pushed back, which is unfair for those punctual team members.