At companies, that are thriving towards efficiency, meetings are usually the manifestation of evil. At least if you let them be.
I came upon this realization (once again) in quite an eloquent way, while searching for some new blogs about meetings.
This is how Google predicted my search keywords when typing “meetings are”.
It seems to be next to impossible to find any positive titles of articles about meetings.
Our mission at Meetin.gs is to create a tool for people so they can make their meetings better. In addition to us, there are many others who share the same goal.
However, in many cases the problem does not lie in the lack of well designed tools. It goes deeper into the whole mindset of holding meetings.
Meetings are a waste of time
This claim is very much true in many cases. It’s strange, but many people still have the nerve to go to meetings unprepared. When going to a meeting without knowing what it is about, you will not only waste your own time but also everyone else’s time.
The crime of not preparing yourself is even more aggravating when you are the one who summoned the meeting in the first place.
Every minute – you spend at the start of the meeting to get all the participants at the same page – is a wasted minute.
So, when assembling a meeting, the least you can do is to prepare a good agenda. Even better is to give everyone the possibility to get themselves acquainted beforehand with all the important materials related to the meeting.
Here’s some tips by Simon Stapleton on What Makes a Good Agenda.
Meetings are bad
Yes, indeed they are. But as said before, this is the case only if you let it be.
One of the best way to avoid a bad meeting is actually not having the meeting at all. According to Adam Singer we have way too many meetings to start with. So, before summoning your next meeting, take a moment to consider is it really necessary. Also invite only the people that really need to be present, as unnecessary meetings tend to frustrate people.
For more tips, read Singer’s post on How And Why To Reduce Meetings.
Meetings are unproductive
In many cases this is true. To improve the productivity of your meetings:
Keep the goal of the meeting in mind and aim to make the necessary decisions by sticking to the agenda. Make someone responsible for taking notes and writing down the action points. Give charge of the execution of every action point to someone specific.
If possible use an online collaborative tool to make a summary and to facilitate the sharing of the notes and action points.
At Meetin.gs, we believe that sometimes the best way to make decisions and to keep those wheels turning, is to have a meeting.
What do you think, are all meetings really that bad? What steps have you taken to improve yours? Leave a comment below.
Image credit: vectorportal.com