When it comes to meetings, remember to prioritize quality over quantity. All too often, meetings are scheduled without truly considering whether they are needed, who actually needs to be in attendance, and what the key discussion points are. The result is unproductive meetings that suck up employees’ time and drain company morale. Keep these tips in mind to make the most of your meetings.
Meetings and business pretty much go hand in hand. But too many meetings – or meetings that go on for too long – can actually do more harm than good. They can eat up a lot of man-hours, leaving employees with less time to actually focus on their work. This creates undue stress, which can decrease workplace morale and increase the likelihood of burnout and turnover. So, before you reserve the conference room, keep the following points in mind.
Most companies are guilty of over scheduling meetings. Discussing items face-to-face is sometimes necessary, but consider whether you could address the points in an email instead. If the answer is no, really consider who needs to be involved in the actual conversation and decision-making process – chances are some people just need a quick email recap in order to stay in the loop.
Another big mistake that is often made is letting meetings run for too long. Most discussions can be wrapped up within fifteen minutes or so. Just because the meeting is scheduled for half an hour does not mean that you need to use the full thirty minutes. You also should not be using your meeting time to figure out the points that need to be discussed. Send out a detailed agenda and key points to attendees before the meeting and ask that they review any documents ahead of time. This way, you can move through the agenda quickly and make decisions efficiently.
The Monday morning meeting is pretty standard across most businesses. This is a time to discuss the status of current projects and to kickstart the week. But it might actually be more productive to have this meeting on Tuesdays. By doing so, employees have a chance to tie up any loose ends, do any needed follow-ups, and generally put themselves in a better position to give an update. Time of day is also important when it comes to meetings. The best decisions are often made in the morning or with a full stomach – try to avoid scheduling meetings right before lunch or at the end of the workday.
By being more thoughtful about the necessity, purpose, and structure of meetings, you can increase productivity and efficiency. Employees will also be happy to have more time to actually spend on their work – instead of stressing over completing everything on time. This helps keep motivation and morale high. Win-win.