Meetings within the professional environment can represent excellent methods to advance a concept or massive hindrances to forward momentum. The key is in the details. What steps can be taken to ensure that an upcoming seminar is dynamic and informative?
Embrace a Clear Agenda and a Sense of Purpose
The objectives of every meeting should be clear from the very beginning. Those with little sense of purpose are likely to be glossed over by the attendees. In the same respect, present all listeners with an agenda so that they know what to expect in advance.
Limit the Number of Attendees
Meetings with large numbers of participants tend to be somewhat confusing and it is not uncommon to stray off of the pertinent topic. It is for this reason that only key colleagues and similar decision makers should be invited. While round table gatherings consisting of all employees can indeed be useful, be certain that those present have a stake in the outcome.
Proper Time Management
Many visitors dread meetings due to the fact that organisers fail to correctly manage time constraints. Be certain that the event begins and ends according to a predetermined agenda. If there are additional questions or comments, these should be addressed in a different forum (such as informal gathering after the event itself).
Provide Preview Information of Important Topics
It is wise to provide a summary of what will be discussed if the meeting involves a major decision. Offering a preview of the key points will enable attendees to appreciate their role and in turn, more pertinent questions will be asked. Although this will require the organiser(s) to devote slightly more time to the project, it is likely that associated outcome will be equally beneficial to all of those involved.