Developing Your Talent

8 Steps to Leading a Productive Meeting

By JC Heinen on July 18, 2012

Are meetings falling out of favor? Often viewed as unproductive and wasteful, many leaders are scheduling fewer meetings and looking for alternative ways to collaborate, share information and make decisions.

While you may not be prepared to abandon meetings completely, is too little accomplished? Here are eight steps that will increase the productivity in your meetings:

  1. Prepare. Invite only those employees whose attendance is necessary. Distribute an agenda prior to the meeting. Assign who will lead each discussion and set a time limit for each item.
  2.  Set goals. Be very clear about what ought to be accomplished, what decisions need to be made and what tasks will to be assigned.
  3. Respect everyone’s time. Don’t hold a meeting if the information can be conveyed through email or other internal channels. Start and end on time.
  4. Limit electronic devices. Attendees should be expected to give their full, undivided attention.  Limit distractions, such as laptops, tablets or smartphones.
  5. Control your meeting. Stay focused, don’t let discussions get derailed; referee and keep things moving.
  6. Include teaching moments. Incorporate a training and development component or introduce a guest participant (perhaps a senior leader from another department).
  7. Wrap up. Close the meeting with a summary to review the expectations and timeline for follow-up items.
  8. Record your progress. Assign a note-taker. Meeting notes include decisions made, assigned tasks and expected timelines. Distribution of meeting notes ought to occur within 24 hours of the meeting to be most effective.

Are you committed to enhance the productivity of your meetings?


Leave a Reply