Let me tell you about a story about when I worked for a company whose ethos seemed to be to have meeting after meeting after meeting. I was a regional manager and all I seemed to do was run around all over the country having meeting after meeting after meeting. When did I do my work? Yes, you guessed it, after hours. I would then go home, open my laptop and work all the hours into the evening. Was this a good work life balance? No.
Does a meeting need to take 90 minutes on average? Why do we do this? Is it because we want the meeting to look efficient and important. A meeting should include the following:
1) Set an agenda – this should be outlined in order of topics and be sent to attendees a few days before the meeting. Everything should not be in the AOB section. It should be on the agenda.
2) Have a purpose for the meeting. Set objectives. What do you want to achieve?
3) Make sure people are assigned to actions from the meeting. Make these decisions quickly. Do not ponder over them.
4) Don’t go off-piste. Make sure everyone keeps on track. The chair for the meeting needs to take control.
How can I help you have more productive meetings? A meeting shouldn’t be 90 minutes on average. If you plan for your meetings and make sure you have direction and focus you can be so much more productive. Don’t have meetings for the sake of a meeting and also don’t have meetings to organise meetings. Be focused, have a plan and make sure you have actions. Call or email me if you need to work with your teams to have more productive meetings. Meetings can be one of the biggest time wasters in business. Make them productive!