The only valid reasons to plan out a meeting
Most of the companies suffer from chronic meetingitis. You are probably no exception. You spend way too much time in meetings, most of the time, these meetings serve no purpose, they are too long, a simple update would have been more than enough. Even so, all these meetings aren’t good for the trash, some of them do make sense (it’s true!) We have listed out situations, for which meetings are necessary.
A problem for which one needs to quickly find a solution? Brainstorming meeting is a must. Get the team together and let each one express their own ideas. Don’t judge the different ideas, let each one speak openly! Even if it’s possible that some might have sh***y ideas, well it’s a possibility. No issues, you’ll sort through them later.
A new project is being launched? It’s important that all the people who are concerned know about this. The teams need to know the goals for the project and the role they play. The idea is to boost everyone about the project.
You’ve just welcomed a newcomer? The lucky person has a lot to learn and he/she needs to absorb the company’s culture. Therefore, it is important to plan out meetings, to make him understand the culture of the company, the future projects, his role and what one expects out of him during the coming months. These meetings help start off on the right foot. Here is what you can do:
A 1-to-1 meeting: meetings can be organized during the initial days of the employee’s arrival, with key members of the team in which he’ll be working, his manager, superiors etc..
Meeting the team: useless reminding that it is important that the little newcomer meets the entire team, though consider this a reminder. A formal meeting isn’t really suitable, you can simply plan out a meal with the team.
Meeting the Office Manager: the newcomer surely has several administrative and financial things to deal with. For this, nothing better than a little meeting with you, Office Manager.
Training with different tools: not sure that the new comer is familiar with all the tools he’ll have to use. Plan out trainings!
Money: Key topic in a company. Well yeah, theoretically your company is here to earn money, this is no secret. When you begin a project, plan out a meeting to see:
How much money you’re going to spend?
Where this money is going to be pumped?
What is the return on investment you were hoping to obtain from all the dough which was spent?
Everyone needs to be on the same wavelength, to avoid unpleasant surprises and clashes.
Organize meetings well
For all kinds of meetings, a few rules need to be respected to ensure some productivity and avoid wasting time:
Define an agenda: what are you going to talk about ? Do you need to prepare things before the meeting? Once again, it’s about avoiding unpleasant surprises « Oh no Jeanne, I didn’t know we needed this doohickey marketing report before the meeting…Well, I’ll get on it this afternoon, can we postpone the meeting till tomorrow”.
Define what you expect from the meeting: what are the elements which need to be agreed on, following the meeting? Does a budget need to be validated? Using a new tool approved by all? Be very clear about the results you expect and don’t leave the meeting room, until you haven’t found a solution. Even if it means spending more time, it must serve some purpose.
Decide on the meeting spot: is it really necessary that everyone comes at the same time and drives to the company, where is the meeting take place? Unless all the participants are already on the spot, this isn’t really environmentally friendly. Most of the time, a simple videoconference is enough.
Define the following steps: after the meeting, pass on a report with the next steps of moving forward: who needs to do what, when? Moreover, you make sure the project evolves, properly.