Do your employees groan every time you announce a meeting? Do you often find yourself stressed or frustrated at the lack of progress being made within them? Here are just five ways to promote better ideas, increase member participation and overall improve the efficacy of your workplace meetings.
1. Reduce Their Frequency
There’s no reason to hold weekly meetings unless you have something new to say every week. Don’t call meetings as a matter of course; save them for when information needs to be shared or ideas need to be brainstormed. This will prevent them from becoming just another workplace chore.
2. Use Metrics
Record speaking times. Use special software to gauge audience engagement and participation. Ask post meeting survey questions. These are all valuable ways to learn both what people think of your meetings and how much they’re taking away from them. If your numbers aren’t what they could be, you know it’s time to make some changes.
3. Know Your Employees
Some thrive on criticizing ideas and tossing proposals back and forth to refine them. Others will take criticism personally and never speak during a meeting again. As a leader, it’s your job to know “who’s who” in your meetings so you can get the most out of the discussion.
4. Stop Wasting Time
Don’t use your first few slides to tell your audience what they’re about to hear. Even worse, don’t open the meeting with “first, we’ll have a PowerPoint presentation” and then use your presentation to say “here’s what we’ll be discussing on the slides.” Skip the exposition entirely.
5. Close Every Issue
If you introduce a problem, don’t stop talking about it until you’ve formulated some plan of action for fixing it. Even if the only solution you can agree on is “let’s shelve the issue for later,” make sure you physically speak those words aloud. You don’t want your employees to lose focus or get off-track of what’s currently being discussed.
These are just a few things to try at your next workplace meeting. Sometimes even simple changes can bring about big results!