How to Run More Effective Meetings, Part 3

This is the third of four blog entries I will publish every Monday this month on how to run more effective meetings. These entries are based on the lessons I have learned from the more than 30,000 hours I have spent participating in or facilitating meetings.\r\n\r\nToday, I want to discuss a few essentials to consider executing during the meeting:\r\n\r\n• Is there a time-keeper? If your experience is similar to mine, it is very common to have a disproportionate amount of time allocated to a particular agenda topic, only to realize that, with a few minutes left, the bulk of the items have not been discussed. This time-keeping responsibility can be assigned to the same person every time, or it can rotate among different team members.\r\n\r\n• Is there a notes-taker? There are two ways to perform this role: record every topic that’s discussed, or stick to the agreements made, who is responsible for them, and by when. I recommend the latter approach, as it’s easier on the notes-taker and captures the agreements reached.\r\n\r\n• Connected with the previous point, when concluding the meeting, do you ask the notes-taker to summarize the agreements made, who is responsible for each, and by when? This is perhaps the most important moment of the meeting: validating with all participants, particularly the ones responsible for delivering on the agreements, that they are on-board and clear on what they need to do and by when.\r\n\r\n• Do you regularly collect feedback from participants on how effective the meeting was? Were the meeting objectives, agenda topics, and time allocations clear and realistic? Were the ground rules followed? Are there improvements suggested for future meetings?\r\n\r\n• Did any of the participants act in a dysfunctional way? Did you notice any one who was disengaged, displaying unprofessional behavior, not following the ground rules, or all of the above? If so, you may need to address this outside the context of the meeting. See this blog entry.\r\n\r\n

\r\n\r\nFeel free to use the comments section on this page to ask questions or post comments.\r\n\r\nNext Monday, I will cover what needs to happen after the meeting.\r\n\r\nPercy M. Cannon\r\nAuthor, Consultant, Facilitator & Coach\r\

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