It is rare that you find someone rave about meetings, talking about how they are an excellent use of time and that employees can gain so much information from them.  That being said, there are some things that are just a little difficult to discuss over email.  This piece will discuss tips on how you can make your meetings more effective. 

Do You Actually Need a Meeting? 

One of the first things to ask yourself as a manager is if you actually need a meeting.  If it’s something that can be put in an email, then definitely do that. It is not worth anyone’s time, and the break-in focus can also cause employees and management to lose more time.  Did you know – it takes over 20 minutes for you to gain back focus on a task after being interrupted? If you call a meeting you do not actually need or have planned, then you are cutting into more than just the time you have your employees in the meeting room, and will prolong the disturbances to their work – which many of them do not want either! To make planning meetings easy and keeping everything up to date, consider investing in some HR software so everything is in one place!

Prioritize What Needs to Be Said 

For anything to be effective, it needs to be organized and prioritized.  To get everyone into a meeting with no clear order of what needs to be discussed and why is just inviting space for chaos.  Write down what the meeting needs to be about, what needs to be addressed, what problems need to be sorted, and what solutions can be put in place.  Allowing your employees to also prepare for a meeting within a similar format will mean there is a structure, and everyone gets heard. 

Keep Engagement Within the Meeting 

The moment people stop listening is the moment you have lost them for good. They could be looking at you and thinking about all the work they are not getting done or how they wish they were at home with the cats instead. If you want a meeting to be successful, it needs to be engaging; otherwise, whatever you want your employees to know will end up going in one ear and out of the other.  There are a few ways in which you can keep employees engaged in meetings, such as setting little tasks to do, remind employees of the goal of the meeting, and encourage everyone to answer and participate. 

Add Treats

Meetings are easier to swallow with biscuits, and as they should only be held if they are really needed, you should be able to splash out on some snacks or a nice lunch for your employees to show your appreciation and allow them to have a little indulgence while engaging with the meeting in hand. Remember, the goal of the meeting needs to be clear, everyone within the meeting needs to know about it, and it is important that there is a succinct conclusion to the meeting so everyone knows how to move forward.


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