Meeting. Say that out loud. How does it feel?

If you are like most, then it’s probably said with an air of distain or a slight bit of dread. It doesn’t have to be that way.

The problem with most meetings comes from a lack of objective and pre-work. Most meetings are done “cowboy style” and the leader shoots from the hip. The rare meeting leader sets an agenda which often isn’t shared to the rest of the group more than 24 hours in advanced.

Aside from all that, meetings tend to be times when those attending are focused on other items. Acting like they are paying attention but doing something else instead.

Our meetings are meant to uplift us, move us forward and get things done. Here are just a few items we live by at Barn Raisers.

  1. Send a Pre-Agenda: Create an outline for the agenda and ask the attendees for specific feedback or actions prior to submitting the actual agenda.
  2. Share a Final Agenda: For most meetings, aim for an agenda that can be completed in 15 to 30 minutes, with discussions. Share it out to the group and ask each member to be ready with their specific items. Designate what items are for group discussion vs discussion between a few members.
  3. Assign a Note Taker: Someone takes the notes along with tasking out commitments.
  4. Assign a Time Keeper: Give a member the roll to keep track of the time spent on an item or issue. Pay attention to any discussion that is going long between a two or three members and ask them to have a separate gathering on the topic to avoid stifling the group discussion.
  5. Reduce the Tech: Close the laptop, tablet and phone and pay full attention to the speaker.

These have worked well for us. Perhaps they’ll work well for you in your next meeting.