Meetings can either make or break teams. Dynamic, efficient meetings can lead to more productivity within your team. However, unorganized meetings that are time-consuming can hinder your team’s performance.
In the UnFranchise® Business, most teams meet on a weekly basis. Since we’re an online business, UFOs don’t have to all meet up in person. Many teams use Zoom or hold conference calls, which we strongly encourage. Whether it’s an in-person or online meeting, the same principles apply. It’s about working smarter, not harder when it comes to hosting meetings. Here are a few tips to follow.
Figure Out A Day And A Time That Accommodates The Most People
Timing is everything. Meetings should be held on a day when most of your team can attend. Similarly, meetings should take place at a time that accommodates the majority of your members. Meeting days and times will vary from team to team. It’s important to communicate with your teams and compare schedules. From experience, hosting a meeting at 8 PM EST on a Friday night usually leads to a low turnout. Then again, conducting a meeting at 9 AM EST on a Monday morning may be a popular choice, but it’s far from ideal. Mid-week meetings (Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday) seem to work the best for our team. That being said, talk with your teams and plan accordingly.
Consistency Is Key
Schedules can be unpredictable. Just look at the world today and its global health issues. Things constantly change. Try to remain consistent as best as you can. If your team plans to meet once a week for a month straight, stick to that game plan. Stay flexible with the date and time, but don’t skip a week unless it’s absolutely necessary.
Benjamin Franklin once said, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Preparing for a meeting is not optional, but mandatory. The last thing you want to do is host a meeting with an unprepared agenda. Planning the topics beforehand helps participants stay focused and it keeps the meeting moving. This doesn’t mean that improvisation is banned. Use an agenda as a roadmap for the key points you want to hit.
Short, Sweet, And To The Point
Bigger and longer doesn’t necessarily mean better. Attention spans usually dwindle if a meeting drags on over an hour. Try to keep meetings between 30 minutes to an hour. That way, side conversations and other distractions will be minimized because of the time constraint. Efficiency is the goal.
Set The Scene In The Beginning, Summarize At The End
The first five minutes and last five minutes are arguably the most important times of the meeting. The first five minutes set the scene and the last five minutes summarize the discussion. Take the first five minutes of every meeting to introduce the topics that you’ll cover during the session. This way, your team will know what to expect. Think of it as providing a menu to your customers. Then, during the last five minutes of the meeting, summarize what was just discussed. Recap the key points in order to emphasize their importance. It’s also a great time to take questions in order to facilitate a conversation.
What are your tips for hosting weekly meetings? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.