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Elements of Effective Meeting Management

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  • 0:00 Why Some Meetings Just…
  • 1:16 How to Run a…
  • 2:37 Structure
  • 3:14 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Kat Kadian-Baumeyer

Kat has a Master of Science in Organizational Leadership and Management and teaches Business courses.

Effective meeting management is not difficult. Simply implementing a few steps when planning and conducting a meeting can improve the structure, content and flow.

Why Some Meetings Just Don't Work

When new manager, Bryson, set out to hold his first staff meeting, he wasn't really sure how to make good use of the time. He knew he wanted to talk about the new human resources policy and a few other things, but how to actually put it all together was perplexing to him.

So, he decided to wing it. Yes, Bryson decided to do it without a plan. Obviously, things got out of control. People were talking over one another, playing with their phones and paying little attention to what was being presented. The staffers who were attentive made the decisions without input from the others. Some of Bryson's staff became quickly distracted, while others called the shots during the meeting. Bryson lost control.

You see, there are a few reasons why this happens:

  • Roles are not clearly defined
  • Objectives are not clear
  • The meeting facilitator did not present the team with an agenda
  • Too many agenda items
  • Those involved in the meeting are not part of the decision-making process

In Bryson's meeting, it seems like the failed meeting was a combination of all of the above. But don't worry, there's hope! If you follow a few steps, meetings can be more productive and effective.

How to Run a Productive Meeting

Let's step back into Bryson's meeting. First, roles need to be defined. What Bryson should have done was let the team know what he expected from each member of the team. Breaking the team down into smaller sub-teams can do this.

Next, objectives need to be clearly stated. This is nothing more than conveying the goals for the meeting. Once the goals are stated, members will have a much better idea of the meeting's overall direction.

Of course, an agenda should have been emailed to all attendees prior to the meeting date. This is simply a list of items that are going to be discussed during the meeting.

This is important for several reasons:

  • First, everyone is made aware of the meeting's purpose
  • Secondly, it gives staff time to prepare for the meeting
  • It also serves as a tool to keep people on track

Don't get me wrong. An agenda is a good thing. However, it shouldn't be too long. A few items are enough. Having too many agenda items may not leave enough room to work through each item.

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