Know How to Lead Meetings Effectively
Do you hate going to meetings? I think pretty much we all do. But I’ve got a few tips today to help you make your meetings go better. Congratulations on taking one more step towards becoming one of the great leaders of tomorrow.
How to Lead Meetings Effectively- 4 Effective Tips
Today I’ve got four tips for you that will make your meeting stand out above everyone else’s. A few years back, I kept all my meetings to an hour or less because I feel like meetings become unproductive after about an hour. And that’s kind of a guideline I’ve used throughout my career. Now it’s not always possible to keep a meeting to under an hour. Sometimes there’s just too much you’ve got to get done. But here are four tips. No matter how long your meetings will be that you can have a successful meeting. No one will feel like you’re wasting their time.
1. Set the purpose of your meeting
Tip number one for effective meetings is to have a clear purpose and ensure everyone coming to the conference knows that purpose. A lot of times, meeting dragged on and on. Because people will bring up things that aren’t related to the purpose of the meeting. But because you’ve got all the right people in the same room as the meeting organizer, you should stick to the purpose. Also, when you’re creating your goal of the meeting, think about what you’re really doing here.
Meetings really should be for making decisions or bringing work product together that people can’t do on their own. Too often, we bring together our meeting, and we’re trying to do the work at the meeting. And there are times when you must do that. And that’s okay but make sure that that’s the purpose of your meeting. It’s more of a working group kind of scenario, and everyone understands it’s not a decision meeting.
2. Set an agenda for the meeting
Tip number two is to have an agenda for your meeting. And this is a little bit more work upfront for you as the meeting organizer. But it really pays off in the end. Every decision you’re going to make should be on that plan. Every item you need to cover with that information or presentation needs to be part of that. The Decision-making process needs to be on that plan just like setting a time limit for the general meeting. We talked about earlier, make sure you select a time limit for each item on the agenda.
Now there are times that this will be critical if you need to go over that time limit. But as the meeting organizer is our job to make sure we keep everything on time and moving. So we can get people out and onto their next thing.
3. Create a guest list
Tip number three is to manage the guest list for your meeting. And you mainly want to do this because you want to get the right people in the room who will help you make the decisions. That you need to make so whether that’s someone who has a presentation to make information to share. Or someone who has a stake in the decision that’s going to be made. It’s going to impact them in some way. You want to get all those people in the room to hear their position to get the information. And all make the decision together just as important.
And maybe even more so to keep the wrong people out of the room. And this happens in big organizations people hear a meeting is going on. They show up they’re interested in what’s going on. But they might not really have a stake in the decision or be up to speed enough on the issue to really contribute. But sometimes, that does take time to get them up to speed and hearing their thoughts on the matter. So remember, as a meeting is organized, our job is to get everyone in the room who will be impacted by the decision. Get all the stakeholders in the room that the right people in, but make sure you keep the wrong people out.
4. Never assume things
Time for tip number four for effective meetings, and I cannot emphasize this one enough because it happens all the time. Do not engage in speculation or encourage speculation of facts and information that you need to make your decision. If you really need a piece of information to go forward and make a decision, go get it. Whether it’s in real-time or it makes sense to adjourn the meeting and assign someone to get the right information. And bring it back to the group at a later date to make the decision.
Speculation just sends things in circles, and people trying to prove each wrong. Don’t engage in speculation. Get the facts and information you need to make your decision put it in front of the group. Make the decision together.
So these four tips have been kind of geared towards if you’re the meeting organizer. I hope now you know how to lead meetings effectively. A lot of times, meetings are frustrating because we are not the meeting organizer. We don’t have control of what’s going on. Bonus tip for today if you’re not the meeting organizer and see things are going off the rail, try to help the meeting organizer apply some of these tips.