Let’s be honest, no one really enjoys meetings. Whether they be work or school related, face-to-face, over the phone, or done virtually, meetings are just one of those things that everyone dreads.
And why might this be the case? Well, generally, meetings have a way of taking on a life of their own and sometimes it’s hard for anything to actually get accomplished. There are many reasons as to why this may be, ranging from too many people to not having a clear enough agenda, and this makes meetings undesirable.
So, what can be done to make these team gatherings worthwhile? According to Craig Jarrow, who penned the Time Management Ninja, the answer is simple: before each meeting, establish why it’s happening.
So often we walk into meetings completely clueless in regard to what the meeting is even about. And, it’s in these meetings that we often leave even more baffled and with a legal pad full of scribbles.
What’s the point?
Jarrows explains that, before each meeting, the question “What is going to be accomplished in this meeting?” should be posed. Plainly put: What’s the point?
If there is no point, it is likely that nothing will get accomplished.
From personal experience, I’ve found that there are a few ways to find accomplishment in these settings, as both the team leader or as a team member.
What to do as Thing 1 or Thing 2
If you’re the one working to put the meeting together, create an outline or agenda of what the meeting will entail. At the top of the agenda, put the meeting’s objective in bold so that everyone is on the same page. Email this to attendees at least thirty minutes ahead of the meeting time.
If you’re a team member or attendee and feel uncertain as to why the meeting is happening, reach out with an email containing something along the lines of, “Can you please let me know the topic of today’s meeting so I can come with the appropriate materials?”
However, this email suggestion is in a general sense. Of course there are team leaders out there who would respond with, “What does it matter? You should come prepared to every meeting.” So, use caution and judgment when exercising this tactic.
At the end of the day
In the end, it is important to be aware of the purpose. This applies to meetings – and also your work in general.