No one really likes attending meetings, but they’re a necessary part of business. You need to meet everyone occasionally so that you can all catch up and ensure everybody is on the same page. A lot of people feel like meetings are a waste of time and they don’t really help anyone to get anything done. But if you plan your meetings wisely, you can make them more productive and ensure you’re not wasting anyone’s time. Before you have your next meeting, there are a few things you can do to make sure it’s as productive as it can be.
Make Sure a Meeting Is Necessary
Before planning a meeting, you should make sure that it’s absolutely necessary. People often joke that a meeting could have been an email, but there’s definitely a lot of truth in that. Are you calling a meeting just to give people information that they could have read in their own time? If the meeting doesn’t require any interaction or input from anyone else, you could just send them the necessary information. Think about the types of meetings you’re holding and what their real purpose is before you gather everyone together and potentially waste their time.
Create a Meeting Agenda
Having a clear agenda for a meeting can be a useful way of keeping the pace up. Meetings can become slow and tedious if no one is keeping an eye on the time and moving through the important topics. If each issue you need to address ends up becoming a long discussion, the meeting can become a lot longer than necessary. By setting out an agenda you can ensure you keep moving onto the next topic and don’t get stuck talking about one thing. Send the agenda around to participants before the meeting starts so everyone knows what’s on it.
Record Your Meetings
Being able to return to things discussed in a meeting can be useful. By recording meetings, you can send attendees a recording or transcript. It’s also useful for anyone who might have missed the meeting. You can easily record meetings on your phone. Just look up how to record audio on iPhone to discover how you can start recording. Just be aware that audio files can take up a lot of space. Think about how to store any audio files that you create and how long you need to keep them before they can be deleted.
Follow Up on Meetings
Following up on meetings can be just as important as meetings themselves. It gives you a chance to make sure everyone is on the same page and update anyone who wasn’t at the meeting too. Following up might mean sending an email with key points or checking on individual people to make sure they know what they need to do next. Doing this also means meeting attendees don’t necessarily have to take notes so they can concentrate more on the meeting.
If your business meetings are unproductive, make a few changes so that they are more useful to you and everyone else.