Grow Your People — Produce Better Results

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Thanks to:

Dale Carnegie Training Newsletter

By Anita Zinsmeister, President
Dale Carnegie® Training of Central & Southern New Jersey

9 Tips For Improving
Your Next Meeting
  • Word count for this issue: 571
  • Approximate time to read: 2.3 minutes @ 250 words per minute 
Time is one of your most precious resources and the last thing you want to do is waste it.  While business meetings can be a great way to get your team on the same page and to hear about new ideas, they can also be huge time suckers.  It is extremely important that you do everything in your power to ensure that your next meeting is a success.
9 Tips To Help Improve Your Next Business Meeting:
In order to help you have more success, we have listed below nine tips for getting the most out of your next business meeting.
1.  Have A Clear Objective – Before setting up your next meeting, think about what it is you want to accomplish and relay this to your staff.  You want everyone to be on the same page.
2.  Be Timely – If you say you are going to start a meeting at 3:00, then start it at 3:00.  No one likes to wait.  The same goes with the end of a meeting — end it on time.  Be prompt.  It shows that you respect everyone involved and they will appreciate it.
3.  Ask Questions And Get Clarification – Do not understand something?  Ask questions to clarify what has been said or agreed upon.  Be sure to keep your inquiries clear and concise, so everyone can be on board.
4.  Keep An Open Mind – Having a negative attitude will not get you anywhere.  Go into a meeting with the mentality that you will learn something new.  Listen to what others have to say before speaking and do not interrupt; instead write your thoughts down and address them at an appropriate time.  Be sensitive and do not criticize other people for their thoughts and ideas.
5.  Preparation Is The Name Of The Game – Think ahead of time and develop questions or issues that you would like to discuss before your next meeting.  Send a quick e-mail asking everyone involved to go through the same process.
6.  Write Things Down – Taking good notes can be very useful.  Never assume that you will remember every detail of what was discussed — jot things down — you will thank yourself later. 
7.  Offer Your Two Cents – Do your best to participate by offering ideas and possible solutions (which is a great way to help prevent your mind from wondering).  If you have an idea that you feel is important, share it as sharing often sparks new ideas and adds energy to a meeting.
8.  Put Your Smartphone Down – People might grumble, but it is not a bad idea to ask everyone to silence or turn off their phones.  This way there are far fewer distractions and everyone can really participate in the meeting.
9.  Summarize Action Items – At the end of the meeting, briefly run through what was discussed and who is responsible for getting things done.  Also, make sure everyone is on the same page and understands what must happen next.
Executive Summary:  With a little effort, preparation, and proper management, your next meeting will be a great success.  Take the time to make a plan, keep an open mind, and take the time to really understand what is being said.  Use these tips to make the most out of your next business meeting. 
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