The Tools You Need to Make Every Meeting More Productive. Alexandra and because it’s so fast to set up a meeting and Set up these tools on your. Are Your Meetings Productive or Time Wasters? A crucial part of any effective meeting is having a set of meeting standards or Notify me of follow-up comments. 7 Secrets of the Most Productive Meetings Next set up smaller groups to meet Any employee who is marked tardy will have to stay after the meeting to clean up.
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If you have ever wanted to pop an escape hatch or teleport to distant worlds just to get out of a meeting, take heart. Forward-thinking companies have found creative ways to get their teams together, and their lessons and structure can be easily duplicated in meetings anywhere.
Most of them are science-backed and all of them are grounded in successful experience. With just a handful of hacks, meetings can be speedier, more productive , and more enjoyable for everyone involved. Here are 9 outside-the-box ideas—and the science and success behind them—that you can discuss … at your next meeting, I guess. When it comes to meeting pain points, length often tops the list. How is it that meetings tend to go on so long, sometimes OK, many times unnecessarily? For this reason, you may want to keep meetings to 15 minutes or shorter, whenever possible.
The team at Percolate sets 15 minutes as the default length for all meetings, adjusting up or down as needed. Percolate values the minute default so highly, they framed it in their set of six meeting rules. Why might it seem like 15 minutes is an ideal starting point for meeting length? For the science behind the minute rule, you need look no further than a TED talk. Each TED talk is kept to 18 minutes or shorter, the same time as a coffee break and a helpful constraint for presenters to organize their thoughts.
Scientifically, 18 minutes fits right in with the research on attention spans: The minute max has physiological roots. Our bodies require a large amount of glucose, oxygen, and blood flow when the brain processes new information. Sooner or later, we feel physically fatigued.
How keep yourself accountable to a set meeting length? Why not set a timer. The company that built Basecamp is quite rigid about meetings. Their first instinct is to avoid meetings altogether. The psychological effect of the timer can be traced to the creative burst brought forth by limitations and constraints and deadlines.
Many amazing artists—like Austin Kleon and Damien Correll—use constraints to fuel their ideas and creations. The countdown of a timer might do the same for your meeting and it will at least get you out of there in time for lunch.
It refers to a daily team meeting where team members receive status updates on the latest happenings. Still, the name for the stand-up meeting did originate from standing. The more uncomfortable everyone gets, the quicker the meeting will go.
Benefits of standing up extend beyond expediency, too. Andrew Knight and Markus Baer of Washington University conducted a study on stand-up meetings versus sit-down meetings, rating the ability of participants to work together, share ideas, and produce quality work. They measured these different elements using surveys, observation, and physiological sensors.
Standing up leads to greater excitement about the creative process and it allows for greater collaboration on ideas. Do you take notes during meetings?
If so, hand-written notes are the way to go. Students watched a minuted TED talk video, taking notes along the way. Researchers compared those who took notes by hand and those who took notes on a laptop and found that while the factual recall of knowledge was similar, the conceptual recall had a clear winner.
Those who took notes by hand did significantly better on understanding concepts. Beyond a better understanding of concepts, a no-laptop rule should help with focus and attention, which is why many companies have taken that route.
Speaking of banned electronics …. In a fast, efficient meeting, there should be no time to check cell phones, and just in case, many companies take the added step of asking employees to leave their phones at the door.
Even the White House is in on the act. In Cabinet meetings, attendees are asked to write their name on sticky notes, place them on their phones, and deposit their phones in a basket.
The reasons for creating a no-cell-phone zone might seem obvious games and texts would figure to detract from focus , and there has been research, too, into the detriment of cell phones in meetings. The Marshall School of Business conducted a survey of over professionals and found that cell phone use is almost always frowned upon by your coworkers:. The leaner the invite list, the more time it leaves for the uninvited to forge ahead with other work.
Steve Jobs and Apple found their most effective way to end a meeting was to assign responsibility for tasks and decisions. Every task is assigned a D. Doing so provides public accountability for an individual to ensure that the project or task got done, and it sends clear, organized instructions for the team to follow.
Alexander Kjerulf, author of Happy Hour Is 9 to 5 , has found silence to be an ideal way to encourage deep thinking and ideas, right in the midst of a meeting. The purpose of meetings is not to talk—the purpose of meetings is to arrive at ideas, solutions, plans and decisions. American Express vice president Christopher Frank recommends a constraint on the way you think about meetings.
At the start of every meeting, ask yourself:. Everyone at the meeting gets to answer the question. They can only use five words or fewer in their answer.
This will show you if everyone is on the same page or not and if your meeting topic is focused enough. Are the answers inconsistent or too long?
Refocus the meeting and try again. This article originally appeared in Buffer and is reprinted with permission. By Kevan Lee 6 minute Read. There are ways to hold a better meeting. Five research-backed ways to hold a more productive meeting: Can anyone beat my four-hour marathon?
I bet many of you can! Work expands to the time you schedule for it. Set a 30 minute timer. No laptops for note taking Do you take notes during meetings? Speaking of banned electronics … 5. Create a coat check for cell phones In a fast, efficient meeting, there should be no time to check cell phones, and just in case, many companies take the added step of asking employees to leave their phones at the door. The Marshall School of Business conducted a survey of over professionals and found that cell phone use is almost always frowned upon by your coworkers: At the start of every meeting, ask yourself: