How to Make Your Meetings Effective & Concise

Read about three easily implementable recommendations that will make your business meetings shorter and more successful.

A recent article from Knowledge at Wharton asks readers to look at their work calendars to see how many meetings they have that are scheduled to last 60 minutes or more. For some that number can be staggering.

Now, what if all those meeting were only 25 minutes? Just think about how appreciative your staff will be for the time saved so they can return to their work at-hand instead of being in a meeting room.

Making your meeting last only twenty-five minutes is practical, easy, and achievable by following the three basic steps listed below.

Set up
Before you invite people to a meeting, think about why you are having the meeting in the first place. A 25-minute meeting works best for groups of no more than five people. Consider why each person is needed by asking yourself two questions: what role will they play in this meeting? How will they give, or get, value from their time in this meeting?

Have a process and a structure to facilitate the discussion so that everyone can contribute evenly, and a free-flowing conversation is effective. A good meeting process follows your agenda, facilitates participation, and serves the outcome of the meeting.

Show up
Put the purpose of the meeting in the invite, send out agendas in advance, and make sure people have ample time to review any pre-reading. The meeting must start and end on time, and unless you need to show slides or demonstrate something on a computer, meetings should be unplugged: no phones, laptops, or tablets allowed.

By respecting each other’s time and the issue or topic at hand, you can create positive feelings leading to more open, honest, and candid discussions, which in turn lead to meeting outcomes achieved.

Speak Up
Let people know in the meeting invite that they will be called upon for updates, opinions, thoughts, or questions. Use the meeting to enhance work by following a tight meeting structure. People should leave the meeting feeling energized and willing to move forward, take next steps, and be clear on what they need to do. Most importantly, don’t forget to send out a follow-up correspondence.

Go more in-depth by reading the full article.