Entrepreneurs -Meetings – Make Them Effective And Profitable
First of all why hold a meeting? These are the only reasons I could find.
* Communication - what’s going on? A two way meeting e.g. team meeting.
* Informative - what is happening? Broadcasting news e.g. company changes, product launches.
* Present a proposal - how we want to do it? A sales pitch, part of a bid or as a result of some fact finding.
* Progress - what we’ve done so far? Progress meeting usually project based.
* Fact finding - obtain information. To obtain information from users
Now you need to prepare yourself for the meeting.
* Identify the aim of the meeting. Decide what type of meeting and what your aims and objectives are in holding or attending the meeting.
* Collect your information together. Collect together any documents and information that you need to bring. Decide what questions you want to ask. Review the minutes of the meeting.
* Presentations. Put together any presentations or proposals that you are bringing to the meeting. Make sure that your equipment is working and available for the meeting.
Attendees are very important to a successful meeting. Smaller meetings work better, but only if you identify the correct people. For a successful meeting you should invite:
* The person/people who CAN make the decisions that you require to be made.
* People involved in decision making process
* People who hold KEY information required during the meeting
* People who may be affected by any decisions being made
* People who NEED to be involved
Beware those people who think that attending a meeting makes them more important. Extra people at the meeting is just extra work and time consuming.
Now you need to organise your meeting
* Prepare questions, scenarios, options or proposals
* Plan and prepare agenda
* Identify appropriate venue
* Identify Chair
* Inform attendees
* Send agenda and objectives of the meeting
* Verify attendance
* Ensure attendees are prepared
Remember, If you don’t know what is happening how will anyone else?
Managing your meeting
* Come prepared
* Open the meeting, stating objectives and timings
* Ensure Chair manages meeting
* Keep to agenda, but be flexible when important matters come up.
* Keep to the point and discourage long discussions over minor points.
* Document all decisions, action points and requirements or changes.
After the meeting
* Get the minutes prepared and distributed – if appropriate.
* Review to ascertain that the aims of the meeting were met.
Just remember that short meetings with short agendas are more efficient and more popular. I always find that late Friday afternoon meetings are the quickest and more effective! Good luck.