Friday, December 4, 2009

Ten Critical Elements of Effective Meetings

Meeting leaders can improve the effectiveness of their meetings with ten important meeting leading elements

Have you ever been in a lousy meeting — one that was a total waste of your time?

If you’re the typical business manager, the answer to this question is a resounding “YES!” In fact, the odds are you’ve been to more lousy meetings than you have productive ones.

Managers today spend more time in meetings than ever before. As computers have automated routine paper-pushing jobs, more workers are doing project-oriented work, which requires updates and collaboration. Other trends, such as the use of outsourced suppliers and consultants, leads to more coordination meetings between work groups.

Surveys at 3M revealed that the average manager reports spending one to one-and-a-half days in meetings per week. The survey showed that the managers judged over half of those meetings to be a waste of time.

Even though very few managers, and perhaps fewer companies, seem to do anything about it, the keys to holding effective meetings are relatively simple. There are ten essential components necessary to having productive meetings. Improvement in any of the ten areas will produce dramatic results in your meetings.

There are ten essential elements to effective meetings. These ten things determine whether or not productive results will be achieved in the meeting. Meeting leaders need to make sure these ten things are a part of every meeting.

Essential Elements of Effective Meetings

1. Goals and Results — meeting goals that are clear from the outset and are successfully achieved in the meeting.

2. Preparation — participants who are informed, prepared, and ready at the appointed meeting time.

3. Agendas — a flexible, workable, written outline that is followed in the right order and includes time frames and processes for each item.

4. Audience — the right people in attendance who have the authority to make decisions.

5. Participation — attentive listening, active interchange of ideas, and a balance of involvement.

6. Time Control — effective facilitation of the meeting so everyone stays on track and completes each topic in the allotted time.

7. Climate — an open and honest meeting climate that establishes trust and a fair exchange of ideas.

8. Public Record — a visual way to track the group’s discussion and decisions so all ideas are captured and preserved.

9. Process Awareness — participants who are conscious of both the tasks being accomplished and the processes used during the meeting so both can be improved upon in future meetings.

10. Closure — a meeting that results in decisions being made, actions assigned, loose ends tied up, and issues resolved.

Innovative Management Group offers training and facilitation services to executives, managers and cross-functional teams to help them conduct powerful, non-time-consuming, effective meetings that produce high quality results. We’ll show you how to implement these ten essential elements in every meeting in your organization.


Innovative Management Group offers a four-hour training course on "Effective Meeting Management" that teaches managers how to conduct productive meetings that achieve powerful results. For more information contact Mac McIntire at 702-258-8334 or email at

No comments:

Post a Comment