Business meetings are a staple of every business. Whether a company has two employees or thousands of them, they have to regularly attend meetings in order to discuss business plans, further projects, and a lot more. That does not mean that meetings are the only way to communicate; there are also memos, emails, and online chatting software.
Apart from this, thanks to technology, we can now view each other while we talk to each other even if we are a world apart. But if there is something that needs to be communicated to everyone in the office, then the meeting is the best way of communication.
There are a lot of issues and situations that call for something stronger than just a memo. These can include dire situations that the business is facing, the launch of a new product, brainstorming ideas for new products, discussing marketing tactics, and so much more. Read our article on Business Meeting Dos and Don’ts
Effective meetings are the cornerstone of a business that is being run in a great and effective way. You need to find out if your meetings are effective and more important than that, productive. There are a lot of things that you can do like ask yourself like how long should the meetings be, how regularly should it happen, do you need a projector and slides to conduct the meeting, and other questions like these.
Good Meetings and Bad Meetings
Meetings can either be very interesting and interactive, or they can be the most boring events in our lives. All of us have known both these types of our meetings. There are some meetings where we just want to curl up and sleep, and then there are meetings where we are taking notes so fast that we are afraid we might break the pad.
So, what are good meetings and bad meetings?
Well, when a meeting is conducted in a good way, and the employees are taken care of:
- They are empowering.
- Very effective in communicating the message.
- They help develop creativity, leadership, and other skills.
- They boost employee morale.
On the flip side, when a meeting is not conducted professionally, it tanks in a great way and produces negative effects that reverberate throughout the company. Here is what happens in bad meetings:
- People lose focus.
- Attendees or even meeting conveners are not prepared.
- Too many meetings.
- Wastage of time.
- Lower company morale.
Conducting haphazard and poorly prepared meetings have a lot of negative impacts on the company. That is why you need to make sure that your meetings are anything but poorly prepared and ineffective. There are a lot of ways that you can make that happen.
If positive and effective meetings are a challenge for your company, then you can do the following things to change that atmosphere and transform your meetings into the most productive and creative meetings. Here is what you can do:
Ways to Make Your Meetings Better
There are a lot of ways that you can turn your meetings into something that the employees enjoy and they actually look forward to it. Unfortunately, we have all suffered through the dull and boring meetings that take up a lot of our time and make us feel dead inside. If you have ever attended such a meeting, you know how numbing the whole process is.
But do not worry. Turning the meetings around is not as complicated or as tough as you thought it was. This will ensure that your employees are motivated and energized and that they do not suffer through the meeting.
1. Be prepared
Most of us are very good at talking. That is why we think that when we step into the meeting, we will talk our way through it and everything will fall into place. That is a faulty way of thinking. A meeting is just like any other task that we get throughout the day. That is why you have to make sure that you prepare for it.
If you have planned for the meeting, you will be better prepared, and the results will be amazing. Write down the points that you have to discuss with the other employees, also make sure that you take care of the time and conduct the meeting in a professional way. Think about the questions that people may ask and try to prepare for them in advance. Make slides on PowerPoint or any other software so that you can make the meeting interactive.
2. Have an agenda
Make sure that you have written down the topic or the list of topics that you need to cover in the meeting as well as the time that you want to give to each topic. This way, you can make sure that whatever the need was for the meeting, it is being met and that there is nothing left out. It also tells the attendees that you know what you are doing and increases their confidence, not just in you but also the meeting.
Sharing the agenda with everyone is better than having an agenda. People take more interest in meetings when they know where the meeting is going. If they have a complete agenda in their hands, they will be able to follow the meeting better. So make sure that you distribute the agenda and any other paperwork amongst the attendees before the meeting starts. Once you have done this, you will see that people take more interest in your meetings.
3. Manage Time
One of the worse things about meetings is when a meeting does not start on time, and people have just to sit around and wait. The same is true for meetings that drag on without seeming to have an end. Make sure that you manage your time so that participants attend the meeting instead of checking their phones or watches all the time.
4. Frequency of Meetings
Too many meetings break the company. Make sure that you call the meeting when it is absolutely necessary and not before that. Before calling a meeting, ask yourself if you need it or if you can complete the task in some other way. Can you send an email to the staff and convey the points instead? Have less (and better) meetings.
5. Maintain the focus
Losing track of time and agenda is very easy at meetings. The meeting can quickly turn into chaos, and the original goals can be lost. You have to stay focused and keep everyone else focused, as well. Keep away from personal topics or anything else that can take the focus away from the agenda of the meeting.
Here are just some of the ways that you can ensure that your meetings are something that interests your employees and that they do not fear them.