When speaking to clients and other colleagues, one thing is abundantly clear. Most people hate meetings and wish management meetings were more effective. In researching reasons for such disdain, I discovered these top complaints:
It does not have to be this way for your organization. Management meetings are essential for communication, team building, problem-solving, and moving the business forward. However, they must be seen as important and, more importantly, structured for success.
There are some practical things that can be done to make your meetings more productive and bearable. I recommend incorporating these elements into your management meetings.
The first step to eliminating meeting complaints is incorporating the above-listed elements. Next, let’s look at an effective way to structure the agenda. It should look something like the following:
Opening – Attendees quickly share successes, personal and professional. (5 minutes)
State of the Business – Report on financials, employee issues, long-term goal status, and other big picture items. (10 minutes)
Weekly Tasks – Review previous tasks to make sure they are being completed. Old tasks come off the agenda while new ones get added. (10 minutes)
New Business – Discuss opportunities and problems. From this discussion, tasks should be added to the list. It is important to focus on the most pressing opportunities and problems. Pick the top three issues to discuss and then the next three until all are handled and delegated. (60 minutes)
Conclusion – Verify the new tasks are clear and that all attendees know their roles. (5 minutes)
At the meeting, it is the job of the leader to keep the meeting on track. Accordingly, he or she needs to stop the meeting from going off the rails by limiting tangents and disruptive behavior. And either before or after the meeting, the leader needs to hold people accountable for missing meetings, being late, being unprepared, not handling assigned tasks, etc.
As I mentioned, management meetings are essential for a successful business. However, they need to be properly structured and executed. Failure to do will lead to meeting disdain and wasted time. I work with my clients to restructure the meetings to keep the business goals on track, hold people accountable, and get positive results. So, if you have any questions or want more effective management meetings, give me a call.