How to run better business meetings

Management 3.0 Module: Better Meetings

Nothing is less exciting than the prospect of a meeting. While some meetings aren’t necessary and others need to be time-boxed better, meeting with our teammates and sharing thoughts, ideas, opinions and solutions is an important exercise.

But how do you make them less dreadful? How do you stop having useless meetings? How do you design memorable meetings?

These are the questions this Management 3.0 Module looks to answer. The module tackles something that all managers and teammates alike struggle with.

In fact executives spend on average a third of their days in meetings and spend 25-50 percent of the time feeling like it’s an utter waste.

How to run better business meetings

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Shorter meetings are more productive than longer ones. Meetings are not to sell your actions, but rather to share value and to decide on actions together. You should openly iterate and make actions to increase collaboration and energize your team.

One topic per meeting. Meetings shouldn’t be systemized. They only make sense when the topic or issue at hand is challenging or emotional and it would be better to address the concerns and questions of your co-workers. You should ensure that attendees remember to attend, remember what happened and remember what their tasks and responsibilities are.

9 tips for running memorable meetings

#1 Stop inviting, sell your meeting

When you want people to attend, you should learn to communicate the value of the meeting so that people want to attend. And everyone can participate. If you cannot convince your coworkers to attend your meeting, it is your problem, not theirs!

#2 Kitchens are better than conference rooms

Breaking the habits doesn’t necessarily mean you have to book the hip loft 3 miles from the office. Try the kitchen instead.

#3 Break the ice

Start off a meeting with an “icebreaker”. It increases the energy in the meeting, gets everybody involved, and as a byproduct, also helps you find out more about your coworkers.

#4 Energize your meetings with games

Challenge people mentally or physically during breaks or if energy is lagging.

#5 Make meetings visual

Visual meetings are not only more fun than normal meetings, they are also more interactive and productive. Participants of visual meetings are more engaged and prepared for action.

#6 Encourage the clash of ideas

Too often, people strive for consensus which leaves fertile ground untilled. In a good meeting, people get fired up arguing their points.

#7 Make decisions quickly, even if they are imperfect

Getting traction on a single thing is far more useful than touching on many without forward momentum on any.

#8 Promote transparency

Make the meeting available to everyone.

#9 Seek to improve

The sign of a great meeting isn’t the meeting itself. It’s what happens after that meeting. What did we learn? What was valuable? What are we going to do? How will we assess the success of our next steps?

Spice up your meeting by telling stories.

Improv Cards are a great way to bring people out of their comfort zone toward real communication as you go through change management or look to increase employee engagement. There are a million ways you can play Improv Cards, as long as you have fun and open talks!

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Learn more about How to Develop Competence in the Management 3.0 Foundation Module Learning and Competencies.

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