How to Hold a Meeting That Makes Everyone Happy

Image of a smiley faceAre you looking to make your next meeting a success?

Want to get on the good side of both presenters and participants alike?

In this post, I offer eight quick tips to help you run a meeting smoothly and efficiently.

Start and end the meeting on time.

This may seem like the simplest advice when it comes to meetings, but you’d be surprised how many meeting organizers don’t follow this advice.

Begin and end your meeting when you say you will and you’ll immediately earn brownie points with all meeting participants.

Have an agenda.

All meetings should have a set of goals or guidelines and these can most easily be identified through an agenda. What topics or materials will your meeting cover? How many minutes will each of these items take turning the meeting? An agenda doesn’t have to be a three-page color coded document; in most cases a single sheet of paper will suffice.

Select meeting attendees with care.

Who really needs to be at your meeting? Will your meeting invitees contribute important information, advice or viewpoints or are they just there because you weren’t sure whether or not you needed to invite them? Think about who will add value, input, insight and also who will gain the most as it relates to the goals of your meeting.

Assign a time-keeper.

Keep your meeting on track by assigning a time-keeper. Make it clear what duties the time-keeper is responsible for, whether it’s alerting presenters they are halfway done through their sections or alerting everyone there are fifteen minutes left in the meeting.

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Assign a secretary.

Need a handy record of what went on during your meeting? Assigning a secretary ensures notes are taken and lets everyone else get on with business. It helps if this person isn’t actually participating in the meeting as they can take notes objectively and record facts, details and information as is, without being influenced by people, emotions or other involvement.

Give meeting participants adequate breaks.

If your meeting is a bit on the lengthy side or has long sections, be sure to give participants adequate breaks to stretch, get some fresh air, use the restroom, or get a drink of water. Let everyone know you’ll start the meeting promptly once again in 5, 10, or however many minutes you so designate.

Quickly recap what happened during the meeting.

Briefly review what was discussed or presented during the meeting, include what decisions were made or motions passed. Now is a good time to review major points you want meeting participants to remember after all is said and done. Be sure to thank everyone for their time and input and of course, be sure to end your meeting on time!

How about you? What’s one aspect of a well-run meeting that you think makes everyone happy? Join in the conversation and leave a comment below!

Follow Rashelle:
Rashelle Isip is a New York City-based professional organizer and productivity consultant who helps people get organized so they can stress less, have more fun, and be happier at home. Her work has been featured in Good Housekeeping, Fast Company, Cosmopolitan, The Washington Post, Business Insider, and The Atlantic. Get access to her free guide, 10 Simple Ways to Make Your To-Do Lists More Effective, by clicking here.

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