Three rules for effective meetings

If everyone hates meetings, why do we have so many? Aristotle explained it best: The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Or in our case, the synergy, ideas and connections that happen during a meeting should be greater than what each person would achieve individually.

Of course, that’s true ONLY if the meeting is well planned and executed. Follow three basic rules to assure your meeting is “greater than the sum of its parts.”

  1. Create an agenda, starting with the meeting’s purpose. Include the agenda/purpose in your meeting invitation, hand it out when attendees walk in the door or write it on the room’s white board. Just do it and you’ll be surprised at the difference it will make.

  2. Start and end on time. This rule shows you respect your team members’ time. If the meeting is “running long,” ask attendees whether they want to extend the meeting time or schedule a follow-up meeting.

  3. End with an action plan. Identify what happens next, who will do it, when will it get done and how everyone will know.

Want more details? Check out this article by the New York Times.

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