Practical Application: Running a Purposeful Meeting

Instructor: Amanda Robb
This application will help you put your meeting agenda skills into action. Here, we'll look at several scenarios and decide on a purposeful meeting agenda that meets the needs of each individual in the scenario.

What Is a Purposeful Meeting?

Although meetings are incredibly useful, many of us have come to dread them based on negative experiences with disorganized gatherings that don't seem to accomplish much. However, as you read in the lesson, How to Run a Purposeful Meeting, with the right agenda, a meeting can become a purposeful meeting, where:

  • The objectives are clear.
  • Team members are prepared.
  • Participants leave with clear action steps.

To get an idea of how to accomplish these goals, let's look at how to prepare a purposeful meeting through three different scenarios.

Scenario 1: Julie's Kickoff Meeting

Julie is starting a new bakery and wants to hold a kickoff meeting with her staff before opening day. She wants to impart her own excitement to her employees and go over some important logistics for the day. What do you think Julie should do first to prepare for her meeting?

Craft a Meeting Statement

Although getting staff members excited about opening day is a good goal, Julie should have a more focused objective for her meeting. How do you think she could craft a statement that encompasses what she wants to achieve?

Julie decides that she wants to accomplish two main things in her meeting:

1) Motivate staff to have a successful opening day by sharing her vision for the bakery

2) Review the logistics of events for opening day

Choose a Meeting Space and Time

Julie also needs to think about where she'll be holding the meeting and the best time for her employees to meet. Since over ten people will be attending, she decides to hold the meeting in the cafe area of the bakery the morning before opening day so that the information stays fresh.

Write an Agenda

Now that she has all of her ideas, Julie needs to craft a meeting agenda. But what should that agenda look like?

Take a few minutes to write your own agenda for Julie's meeting. Then check to see that your agenda has all of the elements of a purposeful meeting:

  • Did you include Julie's two objectives of energizing her team and reviewing logistics?
  • Did you also include the date, time and location of the meeting?

Julie didn't specify what staff members should bring to the meeting, but consider asking people to leave their devices at home, unless they're needed for work, in order to minimize distractions.

Scenario 2: Chang's Sales Meeting

Chang is the director of a sales team within a marketing agency. He needs to meet with his staff to review the earnings for quarter three and set new sales goals for quarter four. By the end of the meeting, team members need to have three new sales goals for quarter four. So how should Chang prepare for the meeting?

Choose a Time

When do you think Chang should have his sales meeting? He knows that his team has been working late, so he doesn't want to hold the meeting too early in the morning. That said, Chang doesn't want to have it at the end of the day when people are tired. So he's considering holding an afternoon meeting and providing lunch to reward his employees for their hard work and promote a sense of community.

Develop Technology Guidelines

Chang knows that his team can be distracted by personal technology devices, especially if a meeting doesn't feel productive to them. What do you think Chang could do in advance to help with this problem? First, creating an agenda to set a purposeful meeting will help. Additionally, including guidelines about technology use could help set some norms to reduce distractions.

Write an Agenda

What will Chang's agenda look like? Take a few minutes and write an agenda for Chang's sales meeting.

Remember to include:

  • The meeting objectives
  • The time and place of the meeting
  • The norms that Chang wants to include

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