A meetingGroup communication in action around a defined agenda, at a set time, for an established duration. is a group communication in action around a defined agenda, at a set time, for an established duration. Meetings can be effective, ineffective, or a complete waste of time. If time is money and effectiveness and efficiency are your goals, then if you arrange a meeting, lead a meeting, or participate in one, you want it to be worth your time.Mosvick, R. K. (1996). We’ve got to start meeting like this: A guide to successful meeting management. New York, NY: Park Avenue Productions.
Meetings can occur face-to-face, but increasingly business and industry are turning to teleconferencing and videoconferencing options as the technology improves, the cost to participate is reduced, and the cost of travel including time is considered. Regardless how you come together as a team, group, or committee, you will need to define your purpose in advance with an agenda.Deal, T., & Kennedy, A. (1982). Corporate cultures: The rites and rituals of corporate life. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley Publishing Company, Inc. The main parts of an agenda for a standard meeting are listed in Table 15.2 "Meeting Agenda Elements".
Table 15.2 Meeting Agenda Elements
|Title Header||Title, time, date, location, phone number, e-mail contact, and any other information necessary to get all participants together.|
|Subject Line||Purpose statement|
|Call to Order||Who will call the meeting to order?|
|Introductions||If everyone is new, this is optional. If even one person is new, everyone should briefly introduce themselves with their name and respective roles.|
|Roll Call||This may quietly take place while introductions are made.|
|Reading of the minutes||Notes from the last meeting are read (if applicable) with an opportunity to correct. These are often sent out before the meeting so participants have the opportunity to review them and note any needed corrections.|
|Old Business||List any unresolved issues from last time or issues that were “tabled,” or left until this meeting.|
|New Business||This is a list of items for discussion and action.|
|Reports||This is optional and applies if there are subcommittees or groups working on specific, individual action items that require reports to the group or committee.|
|Good of the Order||This is the time for people to offer any news that relates to the topic of the meeting that was otherwise not shared or discussed.|
|Adjournment||Note time, date, place meeting adjourned and indicate when the next meeting is scheduled.|
You want an efficient and effective meeting, but recognize that group communication by definition can be chaotic and unpredictable. To stay on track, consider the following strategies:
With good planning and preparation, meetings can be productive, engaging, and efficient.