Meetings

Updated 08/28/2017

    Maybe you will be the person at the front of this room sometime.
    Maybe you will be in a smaller less comfortable setting to meet.

    The question is what do you, as a Meeting Chair or Coordinator
    need to do for the planning, preparation and execution of a
    highly productive and successful meeting? 


  •  Meeting Purpose
     Every meeting has a purpose otherwise you do not need to meet. So start with these questions?
     - Who needs to be in attendance?
     - Are there people who need to be here who do not work here or will be traveling then?
     - What is our purpose for having this meeting?  Sharing information? Assignments? Bad news?
     - Who will be presenting what information or leading the discussion and what are their needs?
     - How much time will be needed for each discussion and/or presentation?
     - How many people will physically be in the room?
     - Do we need video capability for the presentations or can we distribute them prior to the meeting?
     - What is the end objective we need to achieve?


  •  Pull It Together
     - Make room arrangements first with needed resources as this is a critical requirements.
     - With a confirmed room date/time, announce the meeting and see who cannot attend.
        If they are critical for presentations or decisions, alternate means to attend or another date.
     - When all critical people agree to the meeting date/time, send formal announcements.
        Use the Calendaring capability on the company e-mail software to set a calendar reminder.
        This makes it more challenging for people to say "I forgot" or "I wasn't told"; you have the note!
     - Begin planning any introductory remarks for the meeting and who will present first.
     - Make arrangements for any food and beverage depending on meeting duration and budget.
     - Make arrangements for needed audio/visual equipment.
     - Check a few days in advance of the meeting to insure you can operate the equipment.
     - Require all persons generating material send you a copy 4 days before the meeting.
     - If distributing material, do so 2 working days before the meeting.
     - Confirm 2 working days before the meeting that any food and beverage will be delivered.
     - Check late in the day prior to the meeting to see if the equipment is still operational.
     - Check late in the day prior to the meeting if the room is appropriately setup.
     - Confirm the morning of the meeting that any room is ready and any food/beverage is coming.


  • Key Reminders for Attendees
    - Under your authority, remind everyone to be on time and prepared.
       Meetings are important - let's keep it tight, focused and meaningful to get on to other things.
    - Distill items to the Basic Facts
       Don't discuss history or other non-relevant history.
    - Keep the Long-Term Vision in Sight
       People need the vision of eventual success to work towards. Focus on one target is essential.
    - Set Expectations on achievements and deliverables.
       Be careful not to push to hard, too fast or too far as you will loose support then the team.
    - Stay focused on the meeting.
       73% of professionals admit to doing unrelated work in meetings; 39% doze off in meetings.
       Placing high expectations to get 100% of their energy from this meeting is important.


  • Have Minutes Prepared and Distributed
    - Nothing happens if it was not documented and distributed to all attendees as a reminder.
       This also helps to "hold feet to the fire" to insure set goals and timelines are achieved.