The word “meeting” provokes groans from professionals in nearly every field. Meetings are essential to ensure everyone is on the same page and that work proceeds smoothly – but every minute spent in a meeting that doesn’t pursue these goals is a waste of your team’s time and productivity.
Here are seven ways to make meetings more productive:
- Make sure meeting content is relevant. Keep everyone engaged by skipping any content that most or all of the attendees already know. If knowledge levels differ significantly, create “breakout” sessions to discuss what each group most needs to know; then come back together to talk about common topics.
- Make meetings as-needed only. Focus each meeting on an identifiable problem that needs to be solved. If there is no problem, cancel the meeting.
- Know your priorities. Put items on the meeting agenda in order of priority: The most urgent problem should be addressed first. Also, consider which items need to be covered in a meeting, and which can be addressed in an email discussion or a one-on-one chat.
- (Gently) penalize those who arrive late. Assign a note-taker for each meeting by this method: Simply hand the notepad or device to the last person to walk in the door. This person becomes the note-taker for the meeting. If another team member walks in after the meeting has started, the note-taker passes the pad to the late arrival. Team members will soon catch on that they can either be ready on time or become the note-taker.
- Appeal to all learning styles. Different people learn in different ways, and everyone learns better when the brain is engaged with multiple means. Include not only spoken words or slides, but also the opportunity to draw or map ideas, discuss emotionally inspiring moments, turn learning sessions into games, bring in surprise guests, or get employees moving around the room. All of these will foster better learning, retention, and engagement.
- Share accountability. If meetings involve a lot of talking but not much performance outside the meeting room, pair up team members with an “accountability buddy.” Have each person write down one concrete task they will perform before the next meeting, and have buddies check in with one another to make sure it gets done.
- Use humor strategically. Humor, when used appropriately, fosters creativity, promotes engagement, reduces anxiety, and allows team members to think about problems in fresher and more productive ways. Don’t be afraid to lighten the mood in order to get the creative juices flowing.
At TERRA Staffing, our recruiters have earned a spot on the “Best of Staffing – Clients” list through their hard work and deep knowledge of the industry and its most talented members. We strive to match each client with the people they need to thrive. Contact us today to learn more.