Do you schedule a meeting at work in the near future?
Are you looking for some tips on how to make the most of your time doing so?
While meetings are important, it’s even more important to understand and consider how much time goes into scheduling and preparing a meeting.
Sometimes, you may find it is not in your best interest to hold a meeting at all!
In this post, I offer nineteen time management questions to ask yourself before holding a meeting.
Asking these questions may save you from wasting precious time, energy, and resources.
Does this meeting truly need to take place?
Could the same information be delivered via email, memo, bulletin board posting, newsletter, or some other method?
Does this meeting have to take place in person?
How long will it take for meeting participants to travel to the meeting destination? Could you hold a teleconference or webinar meeting instead?
How am I going to coordinate scheduling?
Will you take the time to schedule the meeting yourself, or will you delegate the task to someone else and supervise their work?
Have I considered the amount of time it will take to prepare materials for the meeting, including memos, handouts, reports, flyers, and so on?
How many items will need to be prepared? What is a reasonable amount of time to prepare, review, and physically print or produce each item?
Am I prepared to spend time researching and booking a conference room for the meeting?
Will you make these arrangements or delegate them to someone else and supervise their work?
Am I prepared to spend time selecting a restaurant or food service institution to cater the meeting?
Will you make these arrangements yourself or delegate the work?
Where in my schedule will I set aside time to prepare a presentation for the meeting?
Will it be this week, next week, or next month?
Where in my schedule will I set aside time to prepare an agenda for the meeting?
Again, will it be sometime in the near future or at a later date?
Have I given specific amounts of time for each item on the meeting agenda?
Doing so allows you to keep better track of time during the meeting.
How many hours will I need to rehearse or practice my presentation?
Will these rehearsals take place during the weekday or weekend?
Will I need to coordinate rehearsal time with other meeting presenters?
Will you coordinate the rehearsals or will you delegate the task to someone else and supervise their work?
On what date will the meeting take place?
State the day, month, and year, if necessary.
Will this meeting potentially interfere with other meetings, appointments, events, or functions?
Make sure to check your calendar for any potential conflicts, either on the meeting day, or before.
How many minutes or hours are needed for the meeting?
Will this be a short or long meeting?
At what time will the meeting begin?
Will the meeting take place during the morning, afternoon, or evening?
At what time should the meeting start to wrap up with Q&A and final remarks?
Will it be 10, 15, 20, or 30 minutes before the end of the meeting?
At what time will the meeting end?
Again, will the meeting take place during the morning, afternoon, or evening?
How many minutes will I need to set up materials, A/V equipment, and catering?
When in doubt, always give yourself more time for set up.
When will I arrive at the meeting location to set up materials, A/V equipment, and catering?
Don’t forget to factor in travel time and physically moving items to their proper location.
How about you? Which of these questions do you think is commonly overlooked when it comes to scheduling a meeting? Do you have any other time management questions you’d like to add to this list? Join the conversation and leave a comment below!