Business Meetings Hints & Tips

I noticed from my years of work experience that managers tend to rush into conducting meetings with their employees without really making sure that what they will discuss needs a meeting.

It is very important to make the right judgment. Is it a meeting, an email, a memo,….what exactly do you need to do to deliver your message? unnecessary meetings are a waste of time, effort and money. And on the long run your team will resent your meetings and will not listen.

How to manage and document your meeting findings is also critical, or else your meeting is useless.

I came across the following document once and I find it interesting and useful. It summarizes a lot of important points to consider in business meetings, enjoy reading it.

© 2000, COMMERCIAL SOLUTIONS TRAINING & Development (214) 503 – 1706

ME E T I N G MA S T E R CH E C K L I S T

Before The Meeting
1. Is A Meeting The Best Way To Handle Your Communication Need? (Consider A Memo, Conference Call,E – mail, Video Conference, Presentation, etc.)
2. What Must You Leave The Meeting With (A Decision, Commitment, Ideas, Consensus, etc.) In Order For It To Be A Success? (After You Answer This, Revisit The Question Above)
3. What Is The Sequence Of Topics That Must Be Addressed In Order To Accomplish Your Meeting Objective?
4. In What Ways (Discussion, Brainstorming, Planning, etc.) Must You Address Each Topic And For How Long?
5. Who Must Be Present At Your Meeting For You To Accomplish Your Objective?
6. Where Should The Meeting Be Held In Order To Increase Comfort And Reduce Influence? (ie. You Influence More In Your Office)
7. When Should You Meet And For How Long?
8. Have You Prepared And Sent A Detailed Agenda To All Participants?

During The Meeting
1. Did You Arrive Early Enough To Prep The Meeting Room And Yourself?
2. Did You Start The Meeting On Time?
3. Did You Confirm That Everyone Received And Understood The Agenda And Is Prepared To Work?
4. Did You Introduce The First Agenda Topic And Indicate The Preferred Way Of Addressing It (eg.”Generating Ideas Is The Approach I’d Like To Suggest With Our First Item, Sales Initiatives.”)
5. Did You Encourage The Less Talkative And Ride Herd On Monopolizers?
6. Did You Alert The Meeting Members When Agenda Items Were Within 2 to 5 Minutes Of Their Allotted Time? (eg. “We’ve Got Five Minutes Left With This Item, So . . .”)
7. Did You Use A Concerns Flipchart To Capture Unfinished Business?
8. Did You Summarize & Confirm Conclusions And Commitments?
9. Did You Thank Participants?
10. Did You Take Notes?

After The Meeting
1. Did You Complete A Short, Clear Summary Of The Meeting, With Emphasis On Decisions And
Commitments That Were Made?
2. Did You Distribute The Meeting Summary To Every Participant And Anyone Else With A Need To Know Within 36 Hours Of The Meeting?
3. Did You Begin And/Or Complete Any And All Of The Actions That You Committed To During The Meeting?
4. Did You Follow Up With any Meeting Participant Who Made A Commitment?
5. Did You Express Thanks To Any Participants Who Added Superior Levels Of Value To Your Meeting?
6. Did You Probe Any Participants Who Were Unusually Quiet Or Who Expressed Reservations With Topics Or Outcomes?

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