In order to have a productive meeting, you need to have the right strategies in place. Click here to learn 5 steps to a more productive meeting
Running into problems with your meetings? Ever conducted a meeting where it seems like nobody listened, people fell asleep, or you achieved nothing even when people spoke up?
Don’t panic, you can still have a productive meeting. It’s all about changing things up a bit to guarantee engagement and interest. The good news is you don’t need to invest in expensive gadgets or services.
Ready to learn how you can make meetings more productive? Check out our five crucial tips below to get started:
- No Powerpoint Slides
Thousands, if not millions, shop on Amazon. It’s easily the go-to online retail store for anything under the sun. Surely, they’ve got a killer method to constantly have a productive meeting, right?
The answer is yes but it might not be what most people expect. Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos banned PowerPoint presentationsas a means to improve their meetings.
How and why does this work?
Bezos prioritized engagement and preparation. The speaker hands out notes about the meeting and the topics to discuss at the beginning of the meeting. Everyone then spends the first 10-15 minutes in silence, reading.
Afterward, everyone can actively discuss the agenda without resorting to boring slides. It’s not about reading the information on a slide but about absorbing the data and then discussing it with peers.
It’s tempting to send the notes days ahead of the meeting but don’t do this. There’s a chance the information changes during the period leading up to the meeting. People might also ignore the notes or forget about the details they read.
Give the notes at the beginning of a meeting so that the information remains fresh in people’s minds.
- Fewer Participants
Ever been to a meeting where there are almost forty people and not all of them relate to the topic at hand? Avoid this by cutting down how many attendees each meeting has.
For productive meetings, try to cut it down to 8 people. Invite people who directly correlate to the topic; if you’re discussing SEO plans, make sure people like the marketing head and the financial advisor attend. Those participants can later disseminate the information discussed to their subordinates.
Fewer participates ensures everyone gets the message. It also guarantees everyone gets to speak since fewer people are trying to steal the spotlight. Having fewer attendees also opens up venue opportunities since you’re not trying to fit fifty people in one room.
- Let Everyone Speak
As mentioned, it’s important to give everyone a moment to shine. This benefits you two ways. Engagement in a meeting ensures everyone pays attention since they have to contribute something and it guarantees you always get a second or third opinion about a plan.
You can simply have everyone present an update about their progress at the beginning of the meeting. If you follow our first tip above, you can let each attendee present their opinions or the pros and cons of the information they read. Doing the latter ensures everyone understood the data too.
At the end of the meeting, do a roll call. Let every participant repeat and list down what they have to do to meet the goals discussed in the meeting. Doing this ensures everyone understands their role and can get moving as soon as the meeting ends.
If someone has nothing to say, don’t pressure them. You want employees to feel excited about meetings, not afraid or intimidated. It should be a productive event, not something to dread.
- Different Avenue
The majority of your meetings will be in a designated room, at the office building. That’s understandable. All the important participants are already in the same building so why not prioritize convenience, right?
However, you should try meeting room booking once in a while. Conduct your meetings elsewhere, like in a hotel function room or cafe. While it might seem weird, you should also consider conducting meetings at the gym, park, or golf course too.
Taking your meeting outside of the usual conference room helps freshen the experience. The new setting could help pump creative juices and get people talking.
It doesn’t have to be so drastic all the time. Book a meeting room in a nearby hotel or business center. That alone can give employees a fresh new experience, heightening their excitement to participate.
- Avoid Sitting, Get Creative
Bored of the same old routine? Are your meetings suffering due to a lack of creative style or agenda? Avoid sitting down and get moving!
Walking meetings are quickly rising in popularity and for good reasons. Start the meeting in an outdoor area, like the park, and spend the first few minutes reading the notes. For the meeting proper, discuss the details while walking.
According to different experts, meeting while walking enhances creativity and critical thinking.
People do it all the time, after all, but often not for a formal business agenda. How many times have you discussed things with your loved one or friends while traveling? Didn’t it produce a more engaging discussion compared to the times you simply talked while seated?
Doing this can also help save time. Some people might not attend a meeting because they want to prioritize gym-time, so why not hold the meeting at the gym? Why not hold a meeting while walking up and down the building or while playing golf?
Start Having a Productive Meeting Today!
You can have a productive meeting by prioritizing every person’s voice, changing how you present information, and offering a fresh experience. Meetings are important, after all, and these five tips can guarantee better success instead of falling back into boring sessions where no one listens and participates.
That said, learning how to have a productive meeting is only the beginning. There are a ton of other tips and tricks to increase productivity at the business place. If you want to learn more, check out our other articles and guides today!