Becoming a meeting master

2008

The hatred of the business meeting seems universal. In fact, according to this piece from Australia, "ask anyone to describe meetings at work and they will probably say they're boring, long and a waste of time." However, writer Tara Weiss has spoken to some people who have ways to make the entire thing bearable.

Some simple – but often overlooked - tips include providing an agenda and sticking to the time limit you allotted. Make sure you plan ahead and have a process in place to make important decisions without having them bog things down. Finally, don't be afraid to cancel if you don't think the issue can be resolved.

The article also suggests that it might be best to get rid of the typically useless weekly staff meeting. This is because those meetings are "longer than necessary, unstructured and boring."

One of the last tips of the article is to try to "add some fun." Serving snacks and beverages might be a good idea, for example. One suggestion is to have an "all chocolate" meeting on a Tuesday afternoon or perhaps other food themes.

Another tip is to start meetings at odd times just to make people think twice. For example, instead of starting a meeting at 2:30 start it at 2:34.

Whether or not any of these actually make your meetings bearable is entirely up to you. Whichever tips you decide to follow, you need to work hard to make them something people will consider worthwhile. By taking the time to do those things, you too could be considered a "meeting master."

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