Are you one of those bosses who doesn’t seem to understand or do anything for their teams? Do you find yourself constantly stuck in the same routine and meeting minutes over again? If so, you’re not alone. In today’s business world, the meetings you hold are very important. Here are some top tips for running more effective meetings…

Free Photo | Serious businesspeople having meeting

Be specific. If a meeting drags on too long without ever producing any tangible results, it’s time to move on. You can’t afford to have people work inefficiently for no reason. Give them a deadline and stick to it. Of course, the time frame shouldn’t be too short (a few minutes), but it should be sufficient for you to see if there’s anything you can do to fix the problem here.

Stay in control. At all times, be in charge. Attend your meeting as the boss. Don’t let other members of the team talk in your name, refer to you as “chairman” or ask you to perform a task you’ve already performed.

Listen. One of the best meetings is one where the members of the team all share their ideas. If you don’t hear someone refer to you as a person, think about asking that person to please stop talking. Most people will gladly comply with this request. When you hear something that you don’t think belongs in the meeting, politely listen to what is being said and try to find out why they’ve said it.

Listen to others’ ideas but make your own observations, too. This way, you’ll know what’s going on. If you don’t think a person is right, don’t listen to their opinion. Remember, you get one shot at it, so use it to your advantage.

Carry yourself With Ease. Good communication skills and an easygoing attitude are great qualities to have when conducting meetings. You may want to walk away at the end of a meeting, knowing more about a topic than the majority of the participants. At the same time, you don’t want to drag yourself out for every meeting you attend. The general idea is to get out while you’re ahead.

Be Prepared. When you are sitting in a meeting, it’s not always your time to ask questions. That’s okay; when you’re listening, say something like, “I’m glad you asked me to be part of this group. We’ll be able to handle any problem that comes up.” This will keep everyone involved in the meeting and focused on what is expected of them.

There are plenty of tips for running more effective meetings. What follows are just some basics. Use these tips and have meetings that help you accomplish more.

Be Prepared. It is best to know exactly what you’re expected to do at each meeting time. That way, you will be able to organize the minutes of the meeting and be prepared for it. You will also know what to say when you get to the end of the meeting.

Say What You Need to Say. If you know the agenda of the meeting, use that as the starting point when you speak. Then, you can refer to the minutes of the previous meeting when you are talking. You don’t have to re-start your speech from the beginning; if you don’t want to get into specifics, then you don’t have to.

Be Persistent. Meeting minutes often get lost in the ether. For that reason, it is wise to make sure that you are there on the schedule. Meeting should be planned around your involvement at all times. Even if you can’t take everyone to lunch, ask questions concerning other people’s work or tasks when you have free time.

Learn How to Manage Time. This tip might seem counterintuitive: for every task you assign to someone at a meeting, think about how you will manage your time during the whole meeting. You don’t want to overbook yourself or waste time on things you don’t need to be spending time on. These tips for meeting management will help you stay on schedule and free from stress.

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