Make the meeting matter
This tip comes from our Powerful Meetings workshop. It’s good advice for any meeting
and it applies splendidly to online meetings.
Have objectives, not agendas. Agendas appear to mean that people will talk. And talk. And talk. Objectives have an outcome (make a decision or brainstorm ten new revenue ideas, for example). When the outcome is accomplished, the meeting can end. Everyone likes outcomes. Everyone who doesn’t just love to hear themselves talk loves the end of a meeting. If we don’t know what we’ll accomplish, then we won’t know when we’re done. Some really BAD objectives (because they can’t be measured, and probably never end) include:
- Give an overview
- Talk about
- Present about
- Take questions
- Wrap up
- Offer feedback
- Go through (PowerPoint)
- Hammer out
When I was a full-time trainer in corporate, we were challenged to write course objectives without the words “learn” or “understand”. The same principle is in effect here. Find a more powerful reason to meet than simply talking (most of these bad objectives above could be accomplished better in an email and save everyone the hassle and waste of time of a boring meeting).
WARNING: If a meeting was going to be bad in person, it will be even WORSE online.