Different studies have concluded that those attending professional meetings often consider the duration of meetings to have been excessive. The general feeling is that the wasted time could have been dedicated to more productive actions.
It is important that meetings are well planned in order to make them more effective.
1. Gathering information
It is important that meeting attendees have accurate data on the meeting, well in advance. Their position in the meeting should also be determined.
2. The participants
The key idea is that, the more participants attending, there will be more dispersion of ideas, more interruptions, more requests for clarification, etc. It is necessary to invite only those who will take advantage of the content of the meeting, and the people for whom the meeting has been designed.
3. The agenda
Although the meeting can be planned in different ways, there are three issues that are the basis. The first is the content that will be discussed. In second place would be the amount of time given for each topic. In addition, it is necessary to have an agenda.
4. Objectives of the meeting
In the first moments of the exhibition, the leaders of the meeting must define the causes of the meeting, and the objectives that are intended to be achieved. In this way, all participants will be aware of what is going to be discussed.
5. Group synergy
The meeting will not be one hundred percent effective if people only discuss the same topic, and there are an indeterminate number of participants that do not manifest themselves. The leader of the meeting must know how to involve all the people who have attended the meeting, so that the talk is enriched with all the opinions.
6. Infographics and charts
It is demonstrated that a chart is much more effective than dossiers filled with text for each participant, and can optimise the meeting duration, reducing it by almost a third.
7. Important, unanticipated issues
If a topic is discussed during the course of the meeting and is considered important but not planned, it is best to integrate it into a "list of topics for the next meeting".
8. Actions to be carried out
What is discussed in the meeting has to be a plan of action. It is necessary to determine the actions to be carried out, who will develop them and how their effectiveness will be verified.
9. A record of the meeting
Make sure everything is written down. Assistants, topics, conclusions and actions to be implemented must also be included.
10. More meetings
Further meetings are important in order to measure the effectiveness of the actions, to deal with the pending issues, the points that have not been clarified or assimilated in the first appointment, etc.