Meeting management – one of the most discussed topics in non-profits and businesses alike past, present and future? Why is that? We have all been involved at some point in ineffective meetings. There are many strategies and leadership styles that address this topic.
Here are a few thoughts to get you started…
- Regularly scheduled – stick to it
- Written agendas
- Limited Agendas
- Focus on strategic and forward looking issues – let go of the past
- Use written reports
- Identify items as discussion or requires a motion
- End a meeting with review of action items
- Include in minutes
Characteristics of Time Wasters:
- There is no agenda. The agenda is not followed
- Material for the meeting is not distributed ahead of time
- Little gets accomplished
- More than one person talks at a time
- Some participants dominate the conversation
- The meeting goes longer than scheduled
- Not everyone participates
Ways to make the most of meeting time:
- Practice kindness and respect
- Listen alertly
- Everyone has something to contribute
- Understanding, not agreement, is the key
- You can change your mind
- Treat comments as confidential
- Return promptly after breaks
- Liberate from electronics
- No right or wrong answer
- Do start the meeting on time. Reward punctuality.
- Avoid automatically covering old business at every meeting. Cover only those areas that need to be addressed again on the agenda.
- Do make the meeting fun and informative, while remaining productive.
- Put important issues that require motions/debate early in the agenda, while participants are fresh and engaged. Stick to it.
- Enforce attendance through a policy that fits your board. Absent members no matter the reason, do not get the work done.
- Set a time limit, negotiate extensions when necessary.
First Non-profit Group
Free Management Library
University of California
Holden Leadership Centre