Making Meetings Count . . . If they’re Absolutely Necessary!
At work, meetings are the biggest time wasters of all. There are Monday Morning Meetings, Lunch Meetings, Training Sessions, Banquet Event Order (BEO) Meetings, Event Resume Meetings you are required to attend, but you can’t see why in the world it’s going to help you or you add help to the meeting. I’m feeling heads shaking to yes right now!
Here are The Purpose of a Meeting:
- To solve problems
- To reach a decision or to come to a consensus
- To coordinate activities
- To boost morale
- To share information
- To dispense educational and training information
One either Meets or one either Works - One cannot do both at the same time”
Here’s what really happens at Meetings:
- To provide an audience for SOMEONE – some people love to hear themselves talk, some like to have the audience to audition some of their stupid jokes and sayings, how many meetings have you attended where all you did was listen?
- To socialize – there are very few people that can work alone for long periods of time, meetings are a great place to catch up on office gossip, what someone had for dinner last night . . . who cares! A meeting is a great disguise for socializing.
- To escape from being effective – meetings are an excuse for poor work or no work at all . . . You can avoid unpleasant tasks or turn in assignments late because you were wasting your TIME at a meeting.
- Habit – the only reason for having many meeting is that its always been that way – regularly scheduled Monday Morning Meetings for example.
- To pass the buck – Very often a decision can, and should be made by an individual but he or she is reluctant to do so – he forms a committee and ask them for a decision or a recommendation. If the decision is not a good one, the committee can be blamed and no one is held responsible.
23 Tips to Making The Most of Meetings:
- Schedule fewer meetings
- Before you call a meeting, consider the cost of that meeting
- Don’t call a meeting unless you need advice from EVERYONE there
- Keep the number of participants in the meeting to a minimum
- Let participants know in advance if you want particular questions answered or problems solved at the meeting
- Distribute a detailed agenda in advance of the meeting
- Schedule meetings right before lunch or near end of the day
- Always start on time, and don’t go back over material for latecomers
- Open the meeting with some “housekeeping” announcements
- Be specific
- Keep it short
- Stay on schedule
- No interruptions
- When people want to speak during the meeting, ask them to stand
- No reading allowed
- Use visual aids
- Cut the troublemakers off at the pass
- Don’t ramble during the meeting
- Use a designated writer
- Take minutes and vow to reach a decision on each agenda item
- Allow people to leave after their point of business has been discussed
- Schedule the next meeting – at conclusion of the meeting
- Set a time in advance for the meeting to end and stick to that time
When it comes to meetings, always remember to do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Don’t ask for, or go to, a meeting unless you have to. And once you’re in one, get to the point, so that everybody can get the heck out of the room as soon as possible and get back to using their time to get some real work done.
Peace & Harmony ~ Cheryl