By: Audrey Thomas
Meetings can range from inefficient to soul-sucking. Here’s how to make your next meeting more productive, whether you’re leading it or not.
For meeting attendees:
- Be on time. Meetings are long enough as it is—don’t delay the start by arriving late.
- Come prepared. Know the agenda and come ready to contribute as necessary. The flip side of preparedness is keeping on task and not derailing the meeting agenda with too much participation.
- Give your undivided attention.Meetings are more productive when participants put away their phones and avoid multitasking.
- Follow through. If assigned a particular task or responsibility during the meeting, follow up afterward and avoid creating the need for another meeting.
For meeting organizers:
- Prepare an agenda. Define the meeting’s purpose, provide attendees with the agenda, and then stick to it!
- Invite the right people. Learn to recognize which team members are true contributors—and don’t bother inviting those who don’t contribute.
- Be brief. Become known for starting on time and finishing a few minutes early. Don’t reward chronic latecomers—or punish those who arrived on time—by starting late.
- Make it fun. A little fun goes a long way toward making meetings not just bearable, but enjoyable!
- Stand. Try your next meeting around high-top tables or standing in someone’s office. This strategy automatically keeps the meeting moving forward.
Try implementing these ideas at your next meeting!