Meetings may be one of the most dreaded parts of the average office worker’s workday and what makes those meetings so dreadful is that more often than not, they are boring. A boring meeting takes time away from an employee’s work schedule and is often time ill-spent. When meetings meander and have no clear purpose, or are on topics that could be covered in a simpler way'”they contribute to inefficiency and poor performance. Interesting meetings, however, are those that have a purpose, are well organized and move along QUICKLY.
There are those who believe that the longer a meeting is, the more “stuff” that gets covered and the more work that gets done. This is simply not true. Even the most brilliant individuals have a maximum to the amount of time they can stay focused in a meeting. A well-planned meeting takes into account that there should be a purpose and the topics should be interesting'”otherwise, participants’ interest is nonexistent.
While it is impossible to guarantee that all meetings will be scintillating, it is possible to evaluate how meetings are used in your workplace and to set time and topic constraints. If an issue can be dealt with OUTSIDE a formal meeting, then by all means, use that method of problem-solving. If a meeting is necessary, construct an efficient agenda and set time limits on agenda items AND the overall meetings. Most meetings should be accomplished in an hour or less. An hour is a reasonable amount of time to cover a great deal of information and allow for participants to get on with their work day.
Consider bringing in interested outside speakers or presenters and definitely use visual aids to accentuate points of interest. One person droning on and on is just NOT interesting. Encourage participation and make sure everyone weighs in on important topics. Make sure that real work is accomplished at meetings. If there is no real reason to meet, consider other ways to get the work done.