If you want to become a great company, you have to hold productive meetings if you want to achieve results. That’s what this section is all about.
Meetings can help you be more productive, not less. They can actually save your time instead of wasting it.
The Five Ps of Productive Meetings.
Every productive meeting must have a clear purpose. Participants should know what the meeting is for. The purpose should be worth pulling people away from other productive work.
For example, the purpose of one of your meetings could be to assess the status of your current Strategic Projects, agree on what the next steps are, and assign them as Tasks.
Preparation is key to productive meetings. Your dashboards should be updated prior to the meeting so that the data is current and accurate. Metrics (Key Performance Indicators) need to show the current score. Projects and Tasks need to be updated to reflect the current reality. Your dashboard must exactly where your company is at right now. All attendees should come prepared to share their perspectives in order to achieve the purpose.
For example, preparation could require that anyone whose goals or tasks are falling behind needs to arrive prepared to discuss what is happening and to provide his recommendations for how to move things forward.
Productive meetings have a clear process, which is defined by an agenda. Your agenda should describe specifically what topics will be discussed and in what order so that participants know what to expect and how to prepare appropriately.
Ideally, you should have a standard agenda for every recurring meeting.
Productive meetings are characterized by the participation of everyone who has been invited. People should only be invited to the meeting because they have something valuable to contribute to the discussion. Otherwise, they should not be there.
In addition to this, a meeting facilitator should be appointed who makes sure everyone present is given the opportunity to speak and ask to share his opinion.
In a productive meeting, everyone should make progress. All participants should leave the meeting better off than when they entered. People should be held accountable for honouring their commitments. Decisions need to be made and documented. Everyone should leave with clarity about what needs to be done next to move the goals.
Any progress achieved since the last meeting needs to be praised and acknowledged. Progress has been proven by research to be a key driver of employee motivation. When people can see that they are making incremental progress, and receive acknowledgement for it, they are much more likely to feel motivated and engaged.
Future progress is ensured by discussing and agreeing on the next steps, getting commitments from those involved, and documenting these commitments as specific tasks to be done before the next meeting.
These 5 P’s of productive meetings should apply to any meeting you hold.