Part of being an effective leader is managing meetings well to ensure your team’s time is used wisely and that meetings create a positive effect on the bottom line.
Also, running efficient and impactful meetings can shine a light on you, so that you are considered for promotions, which is a great way to build your Career Path.
For me, running productive Process Improvement Meetings, gave me a strong Personal Brand within an aerospace company (that I worked for long ago) which led to me being offered multiple management roles.
Also, part of having a strong Executive Presence is running effective meetings. (For tips on how to run Executive Leaders Team (ELT) meetings, take a look at this blog post. Leading productive ELT Meetings has its own intricacies).
Establish Meeting Roles
At the bare minimum, ensure you assign these two meeting management roles:
- Meeting Leader
- Timekeeper (to keep the team on track)
Use Meeting Documentation
- Develop and utilize Meeting Agendas
- Create Agenda items that have tangible outcomes: a plan, an updated plan, a specific decision, a flowchart, a diagram, a report, or procedure
- Assign time periods to Agenda items
- Check off Agenda items as completed
- Use a “Parking Lot” for items that arise that are out the scope of the meeting
- Suggest participants take discussions off-line that are not pertinent to all participants (“Take it Offline”)
- Utilize Minutes to document team decisions
- Use Action Item Forms to document actions, assign owners, create schedules, and hold participants accountable
- Write team ideas on whiteboards or easel sheets so all can see them
Manage Interpersonal Meeting Behaviors
- Use strategies to manage disruptive team member behaviors
- Invite all participants to facilitate member behaviors
- Understand and apply the characteristics of a good meeting
Use Meeting Management Tools to Create an Effective Meeting Structure
- Establish Ground Rules
- Review Ground Rules periodically and ask for feedback on performance to the standards outlined
- Give feedback on meeting mechanics for meeting improvement: Plus / Delta Tool
- Appropriately utilize Brainstorming techniques
- Brainstorm, then later, evaluate ideas
- Utilize team decision-making techniques
- Decision-making matrices
- Team Leader decision-making (when appropriate, e.g., when a quick decision is needed, when consensus can’t be reached, when there are constraints that need to be adhered to despite opposition)