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Making Better Meetings … maybe

To say that I attend a lot of meetings is a bit of an understatement. However, as a manager that is part of my job and I accept that it is something I need to do.

What I have been trying to do at my office is lead more effective meetings, but also to encourage my colleagues to have more effective meetings as well.

It's been challenging as the organization I work for is large and all I can do is lead by example with the meetings that I am in.

Until now … maybe

I read an article on LinkedIn titled Tired of wasting time in meetings? Try this and there were several suggestions for better meetings some of which I already knew:

  1. Define the purpose of the meeting
  2. Define the outcome of the meeting
  3. Have a timed agenda and someone in charge

And others that I didn't:

  1. Facts – not opinions!
  2. Keep people on-point. (Only talk about matters relating to their job)

I think that number 4 is a key idea for any meeting (that isn't a brainstorming meeting) but number 5 is a bit too much. Keeping people on point is an important aspect to any meeeting, but only allowing people to talk about matters related to their job … what is the dividing line between 'my job' and 'not my job'?

This seems like it wouldn't actually have the intended outcome. I think people who are already quite will be encouraged to stay quite as the topic isn't related to their job (even if it might be) and those that talk too much already will assume that everything is related to their job so they will still contribute inappropriately.

I think that point 5 is much better when restated as:

  1. Keep people on-point, only talk about the current agenda item

The article did include a nice diagram that you can download (need to provide an email address first).

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