6 tips to make your meetings not last forever← Back to blog
Usually, the term “meeting” in regards to the workplace is associated with boredom, tiredness and stress. Meetings always run longer than they should. And that is a proven fact. Conversation livens up, more proposals are made than initially predicted, new points of view arise and no one ever ends the meeting. On the positive side, in work meetings, everyone gets to express his or her opinion and is allowed to debate it, but this debate can end up as a negative if this debate goes on forever as it makes everyone uncomfortable. Exercising good leadership, creating dynamic discussions and shortening the interventions of the participants is crucial so that everyone leaves satisfied, and not yawning. There are a couple of applications for these meetings to be more productive, like Worklife or Do. Nevertheless, next, we propose a series of tips so that no one comes out from these work meetings tired and grumpy:
- Be rigorous with the agenda. The list of topics to be go over must be sacred, for better and for worse. If a topic not proposed in the agenda arises, postpone it for the next meeting. On the other hand, all the topics must be dealt with from beginning to end: nothing must remain pending.
- Everyone must speak. The participation of everyone involved is fundamental to create a good atmosphere. Everyone must express their point of view. Although it is true that there are some people who are more talkative and have more initiative, it is also important that you give the floor to every participant. Everyone in the meeting should contribute to the discussion.
- However, no one should talk more than necessary. There are people that take the floor and do not give anyone else the chance to talk: they meticulously share their point of view and monopolize the meeting. Make sure that no one talks much more than they should, because it will create discomfort. Be well-mannered and politely give the floor to someone else. Try to do it discreetly, so that the person speaking does not get offended: being cut off in the middle of a discussion can be considered rude. Make them understand that everyone has the right to give their point of view and that if time remains at the end of the meeting, they may get the floor once again.
- The coffee break shouldn’t last forever. The break during a meeting is very important, to regain your strength and to disconnect. However, these breaks tend to take a very long time. There are people that use this time to make phone calls, to get out and have a smoke or to send the urgent email that they had forgotten to send first thing in the morning. Be sure to be clear about how long the break will be and when they should be back.
- Stay in control of the time. Allocate time to the topics to go over with and stay in control over them. If one topic is more important, give it more time, but don't let it last forever. Try to overlook unimportant issues and make sure the participants do not start talking about unrelated details. Schedule the meeting according to the time you have.
- Be strict with punctuality. From start to finish, be punctual. Try to make the initial greetings between the people in the meeting not take forever and be sure to end the meeting at the time where it was scheduled to end. If it takes longer than planned, the people in the meeting will leave unhappy. Everyone wants to go home after a hard day’s work.
Keep in mind that even though you will always have enough time to stretch out a meeting, but as the old saying goes: whatever is good, if it is short, it is twice as good. Try to make your meetings high quality and well-adjusted to what really is important and putting aside everything that is superficial. Your workers will appreciate it and will go home with the feeling of having been productive and effective. Time is gold, especially during work hours.