We’ve all been there. Sitting through a meeting while you’re thinking in your head “This meeting could have been an email.”
Trust us, no one wants to be the person responsible for bad meetings. They can be long, boring, and serve no purpose.
However, they are a necessary part of the corporate world to generate ideas, solve problems and achieve goals.
Done effectively, you can improve teamwork and collaboration, solving challenges in an efficient manner.
If you have no idea how to run a team meeting, these 8 easy steps will guide you to run a meeting like a boss.
1. Determine the Meeting Objective
Before you schedule the meeting, take some time to figure out why this meeting needs to happen.
Set the purpose of the meeting and its objectives. It could be a brainstorming session, collaborating on a deadline, or preparing for an event.
Identifying why you need to meet and then figuring out what needs to be accomplished will help you focus and run a team meeting more effectively.
2. Create an Agenda
Most of us at some point in time have been in meetings where it was just a lengthy conversation leading nowhere.
Don’t let your meeting turn into a session where your team members feel like their time is being wasted.
Once you’ve figured out the meeting objective, create an agenda before the meeting starts so everyone knows what to expect and can come prepared.
Setting a clear agenda will help focus the discussion on a topic and will organize the conversation in a logical manner.
A few key points such as announcements, project updates, and action items can be enough to move the conversation in a purposeful way.
It doesn’t need to be lengthy and complex.
This sets the tone for a concise and effective discussion.
3. Invite Relevant Participants
Figure out who needs to attend the meeting and make sure they are directly involved or have a stake in the topics being discussed.
Sometimes there can be too many participants in a meeting that don’t need to be there.
Being mindful of everyone’s time and what they can focus on will ultimately boost team productivity.
4. Assign Someone to Record Notes
If your team made some great headway in the meeting and came up with some great points, it could be pointless if there was no one there to capture what was said.
Delegating someone to be the recorder at meetings and take notes will make it easier to collect the thoughts, decisions, and action items from the meeting so it’s not forgotten.
It also does not have to be the same person taking notes at each meeting. Feel free to allow people to take turns being the note taker.
5. Respect People’s Time
The last thing you want to do is make everyone feel like they wasted an hour.
Keep an eye on the clock and don’t go overtime.
If a particular topic is taking longer than expected, you may need to table it for a future meeting.
On the other hand, be flexible and cut a meeting short if most items have been covered and there is nothing new to discuss.
Your team members will appreciate you when they can spend that leftover time on other pertinent tasks.
If a lot of people are on vacation, cancel and reschedule the meeting.
Being able to adapt to the needs of your team will help avoid fluff meetings and gain respect from your colleagues.
6. Allow Everyone a Chance to Speak
It’s important to allow everyone involved in the meeting a chance to share their thoughts, ideas, and feedback.
Meetings should be a time for collaboration, not for just reporting information or for one person dominating the conversation.
Providing a safe forum of open discussion will boost team morale, and not hide potential great ideas that team members could have kept to themselves had they not been encouraged to share their thoughts.
7. Encourage Participation
There’s nothing worse than being in a meeting with someone who just loves the sound of their own voice. As a meeting organizer, always encourage participants to have a voice.
Ask open-ended questions in meetings. And be okay with getting answers you don’t agree with. Effective team meetings involve lots of dialogue and you must be the one to drive it.
8. Follow Up
After the meeting is over, it is important to follow up with your team to go over what was discussed and highlight key action items.
This can easily be done by sending a brief email to all the participants with a summary and including the action items that need to be done.
This will help your team members remember what happened during the meeting and what they need to work on, producing the tangible results that you’re looking for.
9. Collect Feedback
As a team leader, you should always look for ways to improve the effectiveness of your meetings.
Ask your team members for feedback if you were able to meet the goals and objectives of the meeting and if not, what could be done better.
Make sure you ask them to be honest as their answers will be key to finding out how you’re leading these meetings.
You will be able to know what to improve on which will only make your meetings better and more productive.
Running an effective team meeting is something we all can achieve and the more you do it, the easier it will become.
Don’t let the pressure get to you. It’s perfectly normal if you feel nervous when everyone is looking at you and wondering what to do next.
By focusing on these steps, you will be well on your way to becoming an effective team leader and running a meeting like a boss.
Our free Career Center is also a helpful resource to guide you in the workplace. Get instant access to free career downloads after subscribing!
Over to You
Now that you know what it takes to run a team meeting effectively, what steps have you implemented with your own meetings?
Let us know what worked on our social @netwerkmovement and share this with anyone who wants to level up as a team leader!