It’s been widely stated that meetings are the biggest time wasters in the modern workplace. This is mainly because of poor planning, disorganised staff members, off-topic conversations, and sloppy agendas.
If there is no clear objective for a meeting, then it might as well be scrapped. You should always outline exactly why you are holding a meeting and what you hope to gain. One way of assuring optimal results is by means of a well-structured agenda. Let us show you how.
Planning your perfect agenda in 5 easy steps
Plan in advance
Send the first draft of your final agenda to meeting attendees at least two weeks in advance. Urge the attendees to provide feedback ahead of the meeting. This way they are informed of the upcoming meeting, the discussion topics, and should there be anything they would like to add, they can provide it ahead of time and not during the meeting.
Before starting your agenda, write no more than two sentences that summarise the goal you would like to achieve from this meeting. This way, people will arrive informed and hopefully with some planned ideas on how to help you achieve your goal.
After establishing the goal of this meeting, prioritise your list of topics from most important to least. This will help ensure that the most important issues are discussed and hopefully resolved.
Keep it short
No one wants to spend an entire morning/afternoon in one meeting. Stick to no more than five topics. Keep them short to ensure that they are thoroughly discussed and the necessary action items outlined and agreed on.
Time your topics
Let your topics dictate how much time is needed for that item to be discussed in detail, as well as the necessary action items. Be wary of steering off topic and hopping around between items.
Meetings are important to help you and your team to reach decisions and common understanding on urgent matters that will affect your business. It is therefore crucial to keep your meetings productive. Keeping your employees locked inside a meeting room the whole day means your business is standing still outside. So, be smart. Embrace productive planning.