Estimated reading time: 5 mins
A Guest Post by Mary Watson
In the modern business world, meetings have seen a change regarding how people seem them. For some, it’s time away from their desks to get some shut-eye and to take what they think is a well-deserved break. Others believe it’s their time to shine.
This is an odd mix of individuals to have in one room, so it makes sense why meetings are becoming ineffective. However, they are still an important part of modern-day business, so what can you do to make things better?
To get you started, here are eight essential tips you need to know to ensure all your future meetings have the impact they deserve.
There’s nothing worse than going into a meeting and realising you have to idea what you’re about to be doing or what you’re going to say. This will mean that the attendees will get bored easily and you’ll be stumbling on your words. They’ll probably be a lot of ‘umming’ going on.
Make sure that you get prepared well in advance of your meeting, so you know exactly what you’re doing to be saying and talking about. This also goes for any files and handouts you’ll need during the meeting.
Michael Wall, a speechwriter for UK Writings, suggests;
“If you’re going to do a lot of talking throughout your meeting, make sure you write some notes down and practice before the meetings start. It may seem clichéd to stand in front of a mirror and practice, but it can do a world of good for your performance.”
Know Who’s Attending
Before you enter your meeting, and I mean way before you enter your meeting, take a look at the list of everybody that will attend. Do you see any managers, officials or even CEO’s on the site? If not, no important decisions are going to be made during that meeting.
By knowing exactly who’s attending the meeting, you’ll be able to cater your segment to the audience, so it’s optimally effective with everybody in the room. Don’t know who someone is? Do your research.
Define the Purpose of Your Meeting
It’s common for businesses to hold meetings and it gets easily side-tracked into so many different topics that nothing really gets spoken about in depth. This ends up being counterproductive.
As a rule of thumb, try to keep one meeting covering one topic of conversation. This will then allow you to go in-depth about that topic, so you can actually address the concepts or problems and get things done.
“There are many types of meeting,” says Elizabeth Watson, a business developer for Academized. “If you’re in a performance meeting, keep the meeting about performance and don’t let it trail off onto something else. This can just get confusing.”
Meetings need to run to the agenda that is set. This means you need to start on time and end on time while giving enough time to fit everything in and talk about everything you want to talk about in detail.
If you don’t manage the time effectively, things are very likely to get off track quickly, and people will be unfocused and uninterested in what’s being said.
It’s worth remembering that this might be one of the only times of the day when you’ve actually got the chance to speak to everybody and have their full attention, rather than speaking to them while they’re working.
In short, you need to watch the clock like a hawk.
Guarantee the Accuracy of Your Accompanying Media
Hand in hand with the consideration above, whether you’re using handouts, presentations or fact files, you’re going to want to check the accuracy of your actual content. The chances are that you’ve spent a good amount of effort creating content for your meeting that will benefit everybody involved.
However, if this content is full of spelling mistakes, poor grammar and typos, this will stick out like a sore thumb and will damage your credibility as a professional. This means you need to proofread your content. You can use tools like Easy Word Counter and Boom Essays to make this easy, as suggested by the Huffington Post in Write My Paper.
Reduce the Distractions
Let’s face it; people are very easily distracted, probably more so when they’re at work. To make sure that your meeting is as effective as it can be, you need to reduce the number of distractions. Fortunately, there is a number of ways you can do this.
Firstly, picking the right location is key. If you have meeting rooms in your building, they’re probably already designed to be distraction-free. If you don’t, pick your room carefully!
Also, it may be a good idea to ban technology in your meetings. Make it company policy or just ask everyone nicely to leave their phones in their pockets and on silent. Otherwise, you can pretty much guarantee that attendees will be scrolling through emails or checking their Facebook pages instead of focusing.
Using a Presentation
You must remember that if you’re using a presentation, which can be very effective, you need to make sure that you’re not just reading from the presentation itself but using it as a guide to highlight figures.
If you’re simply reading everything from a presentation, you might as well not be there. However, you will want to make sure that your presentation slides are the best quality they can be. You can create these using tools like Essayroo and Paperfellows.
Improve Your Communication Skills
The main point of a meeting is to communicate with one another. This means, as the leader of the meeting, you need to set a good example and communicate impeccably. You can do this by making eye contact with every single person in the room while you talk. Also, don’t speed too quickly and make sure your words are pronounced clearly.
It’s also vital that remember that the main aspect of communication is body language. Don’t stand stiff like a plank of work but instead talk with your hands and with confidence and you can be sure that you’ll be communicating your message with crystal clarity, and your meeting will be a success.
Mary Walton writes for Australian Cheap Assignment Help service and edits at Coursework Writing Service, websites that help Aussie college students. Also, she has a blog – Simple Grad, read her Essay Roo review there.