Productivity Tip: Post-Meeting Productivity

posted in: Productivity 2

Here’s a riddle for you…when is a meeting just a meeting?

The answer is…never. Huh?

More often than not, meetings are just a stepping stone from one project or task to another and do not stand alone by themselves.

You could think of meetings and the work that surrounds them as a type of “meeting sandwich.” Meetings are the tasty filling, but you still need two pieces of bread as a vehicle for the filling, i.e. pre-meeting prep and post-meeting review, in order to make a complete sandwich; no open-faced sandwiches here!

While pre-meeting preparations receive a lot of attention, the often forgotten sandwich piece is that final closure, the post-meeting review (or that top slice of bread), which can be so important to future success.

Here’s some tips to help you be more productive post-meeting:

Schedule some time for a post-meeting review.

Set some time aside to reflect on the meeting. This review should be done the same day to help solidify and recall information, or at the very latest the next day, as details of the meeting will become more difficult to remember over time. Gather up related information from the meeting including the agenda, meeting minutes, your notes and any handouts or other documents (printed or digital).

Review the agenda, minutes, your notes and meeting handouts/documents.

Taking a look at these materials will help you jog through the meeting and piece together a summary:

  • Were all agenda topics covered? How were they covered?
  • What do the minutes cover? Do they provide you with the information you need?
  • Do you have questions on any information that was discussed, or even any information that wasn’t discussed?
  • Can you accurately piece together the decisions that were made during the meeting?
  • Can you identify next steps that were discussed during the meeting?

Communicate and ask questions if necessary.

If something is unclear, vague, or just doesn’t make sense during your review, check-in with others who attended the meeting, or even the meeting presenter(s) to get clarity. Time is of the essence to ask questions and get answers. You might even arrange an additional meeting with other meeting participants to review meeting information.

Plan out next steps.

If there were tasks assigned to you or perhaps even your project team/department/section during the meeting, start to sketch out the sequence of next steps to be taken (information to be researched, items to acquire, tasks to accomplish, etc.). This step rounds out a meeting and sets in motion the very ideas, thoughts and tasks discussed and agreed upon during the meeting.

How about you, do you find you put more energy into preparation for a meeting than in a post-meeting review?

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.

2 Responses

  1. Organized Living Essentials

    This is very good advice. I especially like the way you stressed how important it is to prepare before the meeting as well as conduct the follow-up review. I tend to make sure I know the agenda before and then record all of the follow-up information afterwards and try to deal with it as soon after the meeting as I can so I don’t forget later on.

    • theorderexpert

      Glad you liked it. Thanks for the comment!