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How To Design More Effective Meetings -- Part II

In Part I we covered some statistics about meetings, as well as creating your meeting “road map,” aka your meeting objective. Now, it’s time to make a few more decisions.

Who Should Attend Your Meeting?

Once you decide on your meeting objective, it’s time to decide who should attend the meeting.


This might seem elementary or obvious, but not a lot of thought is typically put into this step (how many times have been in a meeting and thought ‘why am I here?’ or heard somebody say that?), so put a bit of time into designing your meeting “team.”


There should be two groups to consider:


1. People that need to attend (they have a stake, or are core to the project, etc.) 2. The “optional” group (those who can add value to the meeting, or have an interest in attending for informational purposes).


As you’re working on your meeting content, additional people might need to be invited (subject matter experts, etc.), so the invite list should not be finalized until you have completed your end-to-end meeting plan / design.


Meeting Content


The content for your meeting should be directly tied to your objective. The content should support, as well as help you arrive at the intended destination (your meeting objective).

As you are thinking about content for your meeting, there are a few points to consider:


Meeting location: What’s the most effective location for this type of meeting? Inside, outside, stand-up, sit down, etc.


Presentation strategy: What type of presentation (if any) is most effective, and just don’t assume it must be a PowerPoint (or similar) presentation. Yes, there are other ways you can present information!


Presentation Strategies – Meetings Don’t Have to Be Boring!


I don’t want to “knock” or discourage the use of PowerPoint types of presentations (they do have their place), but these types of presentations tend to be overused, poorly designed, and act as a crutch for the presenter.


In addition, these types of “passive” presentations tend to bore the pants off participants ...just sayin. ;-)


Hint: Think about how you can get your participants actively involved in the meeting. Are there activities that might help keep people present and engaged?


The use of small group discussion and/or flip charting ideas can help people be more creative and collaborative. Get people on their feet (if possible) – that will energizes and help people maintain focus.


Bottom Line: The more engaged and involved people are in your meeting, the better your overall outcome will be -- I guarantee it.

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