I feel like there's usually anxiety surrounding meetings. I hear a lot of, "I'm in so many that aren't necessary," or, "This meeting is probably going to go over."
While we can't avoid every unnecessary meeting or snag in the road, here are a few things that you can do to make it more productive.
1. Be positive
This sounds cliche, but it works. If you go into the meeting with a positive attitude, it will be a much more pleasant experience.
2. Create a quick list of items you need to cover
I could have used the term agenda, but it seems so formal. So I like to create a quick list of the must-cover items. This keeps me on track.
But what happens when someone starts leading the meeting in the opposite direction?
I personally like to host relaxed meetings so attendees feel free to bring up items that might not be on my list. When someone brings up an item that you know will take more than the time allotted, just take a moment to acknowledge the topic and explain that you might need more time and that you'd like to revisit it towards the end, or schedule something for later.
3. Take notes
You're probably thinking, "Duh, Allison. Of course I should take notes." You'd be surprised at how many people don't! Or at the very least they rely on meeting minutes or someone else's notes.
Taking your own notes allows you to capture the items that you need, and those might not be covered in meeting minutes or a colleague's notes.
4. Follow up with a quick recap of action items
I always like to close meetings going over any action items, but an additional recap via email helps attendees keep these items straight.
What are some of your favorite meeting hacks?