With the ever-growing reliance on technology, business meetings have become mostly a thing of the past. In today’s world, team members work remotely worldwide and communicate through email or Skype chats. However, there is still value in having face-to-face interaction now and then, and meeting in person can make your team more productive and engaged! Here are five simple tips to make your next business meeting more effective wheter in-person or online:
Have a Clear Purpose For the Meeting
People waste a lot of time in meetings, and sometimes it’s because they don’t have a purpose. Before you even think about organizing the meeting, ask yourself what you want to accomplish and what results or action items you should take after the session is over.
Make the Most of Technology
Technology can help you be more productive and efficient in your meeting. The best way to do this is to incorporate conference room technologies like video conferencing software, projectors, and screens in your discussion. Most people are not located in one spot these days, so it makes sense to use software that allows them to see each other’s faces.
If you’re holding a meeting remotely, use tools like Skype or Google Hangouts to allow screen sharing and collaboration. This way, team members can see each other’s faces and work on projects together in real-time. Always ensure you have a reliable internet connection!
Keep Your Meeting On Task
Since everyone will not be working from the same location, it’s easy to get sidetracked. Before your meeting starts, make sure everyone knows what you will be discussing and a clear plan for how long each part of the discussion should occur.
Include Action Items In Your Meeting Agenda
Even if you’re not holding an official “meeting,” it’s important to have action items after you talk through an idea or concept. Assign each person what they should be doing in the meeting, and make sure everyone agrees upon deadlines, so no one feels overwhelmed or left out of the process.
End on Time
No one likes to feel like they’re being rushed, but if your meeting is going over its allotted time, it can be disruptive. Try to end on time (or even a little early) so people don’t feel frazzled and stressed when they have to get back to work.
Create Safe Spaces For Discussion
A big part of having effective meetings is ensuring that everyone feels comfortable speaking up. This means creating an environment where people feel safe to share their opinions and are not afraid of judgment or ridicule.
When team members feel like they’re a part of the process, they’re more likely to be engaged and productive. Try to get everyone’s opinion on the topic at hand, so you have a more diverse range of responses.
Be Open to Feedback and Criticism
Sometimes people will share information that might not be what you want to hear, but it is crucial for your business. If someone has constructive criticism or feedback about an idea, try thanking them for their input and see if you can incorporate it into your final product.
End the Meeting with a Summary
When the meeting is over, take a few minutes to summarize what was discussed and what action items were assigned, which will help everyone stay on track and make sure nothing falls through the cracks.
Use Presentation Software for Easy Collaboration
When you’re working on in-person and online presentations, presentation software is key, allowing everyone involved with the project to be up-to-date at all times and giving them access to any files they might need, like graphics or videos.
There are various presentation software options on the market, such as Google Slides. It’s cloud-based so that team members can access it from anywhere, and it has a ton of features that make collaboration easy, like commenting and chat tools.
Use Collaboration Tools to Create a Productivity Suite
With the right tools, like Slack, Google Docs, and Trello, you don’t always have to meet in person or on video chat software! This way, team members from all over the world can share ideas without being in the same room. You can also use these tools to create agendas, take notes, and track deadlines.
Have a Unique Meeting Format for Each Situation
You don’t always want to meet face-to-face or always have a conference call. If you’re looking to energize your team, try holding an in-person meeting at a fun location like a restaurant or bar. And if you need to get something done quickly and efficiently, consider using video chat software so everyone can see each other’s faces.
Good business meetings are about good preparation. Using the tips above, you can create more engaging and productive business meetings that help your team become better at what they do.
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