Team meetings play a crucial role in the success of any business. Employees must be well-informed and comprehend the company's ongoing endeavors and the expectations they must fulfill. Regularly holding these meetings fosters a culture of perpetual enhancement. In this article, managers can learn how to conduct team meetings properly in seven steps.
1. Prioritize teamwork
Various meetings have varying demands. A manager can send details of a weekly meeting through alternative means like email or instant messaging apps. By sending this data to attendees beforehand, they can read it at their convenience without sacrificing important discussion points in the physical gathering. Storing less essential information on electronic platforms saves valuable minutes that could otherwise go towards brainstorming and teamwork activities instead of merely reciting updates.
2. Assign roles
Running a productive meeting can be quite the undertaking, as there are numerous tasks to manage, including note-taking, sticking to the agenda, and ensuring everyone has an opportunity to speak. Managers can delegate these responsibilities to different team members by assigning specific team meeting roles. That not only streamlines meetings but also helps develop leadership skills within them. A manager can assign three roles related to the meeting: leader, recorder, and timekeeper. If you hold regular weekly or stand-up meetings with your team, consider rotating these positions so each member is challenged in new ways and learns additional skills along the way.
The leader creates and guides a meeting agenda, maintaining a positive atmosphere and concluding with the upcoming steps and action items. The recorder shares the meeting agenda beforehand, recording or taking notes during the meeting, and sharing those notes or insights with all others after the meeting. The timekeeper ensures the meeting stays on schedule and manages visual aids such as slide shows and screen-shares.
By assigning specific responsibilities to each team member during meetings, you can increase their level of involvement. This approach is similar to how investors have a vested interest in the success of a startup. Consequently, instituting clear team meeting roles with defined objectives leads to higher levels of engagement and productivity.
3. Get input from the team
Team meetings are an opportunity for the entire team to come together and collaborate. No one person should dominate the meeting, as everyone should have a chance to contribute their ideas towards achieving your business objectives. To ensure maximum participation from all attendees, you must set up weekly meeting times at a time that is least likely to disrupt other work activities. Additionally, ask colleagues what they'd like added to the agenda so that each topic gets covered in detail during your session.
Implement follow-ups if there isn't enough time during the discussion to address some issues immediately. Those follow-up actions can occur afterward via either future group discussions or individual appointments with employees who initially suggested them.
4. Set up an agenda
To effectively guide your meeting, create a persuasive agenda that outlines tasks and objectives the team will tackle. Distribute this agenda to each member a day before the meeting. A well-crafted meeting agenda should cover essential information like timing, location, purpose, and a list of attendees.
Don't wait until the final moments of your meeting to address big projects. If a conversation starts dragging on, consider postponing specific topics for the next session or scheduling a dedicated follow-up time. It's crucial to ensure that every team member has the opportunity to contribute to relevant agenda items.
5. Discuss topics that impact the entire team
Time is a valuable resource, and pointless meetings are universally despised. Therefore, if you convene a team meeting, ensure every attendee will gain value from investing that hour. It is crucial to avoid veering off course into topics that only affect a fraction of the participants. Otherwise, the rest of the team will disengage or become frustrated, believing the meeting to be a waste of time.
Effective meetings require redirecting the conversation to the agenda and addressing the other discussion separately to find a resolution. Stay focused on the meeting details that impact the entire group and save individual concerns for one-on-one interactions. Utilize the face-to-face time to propel important objectives forward and reserve project management for individual meetings when only a simple status update is required.
6. Encourage discussion by asking engaging questions
Effective team communication and understanding are vital for success, especially between managers and their direct reports. To encourage open dialogue and promote a positive team dynamic, consider asking the following questions during regular team meetings (such as monthly meetings):
a. What was our most significant achievement since our previous meeting?
That is a fantastic opportunity to celebrate accomplishments and bask in the satisfaction of a job well done. It also allows all meeting participants to reflect on how their achievements align with core organizational values, reinforcing them within the team.
b. What posed the biggest challenge for us this month?
Every team faces obstacles that hinder progress toward goals. By openly discussing these challenges, team members can identify ways to overcome them and prevent them from negatively impacting productivity and team morale.
c. How can we improve as a company?
Sometimes, individuals hesitate to voice their concerns about the company's culture, priorities, or strategy. However, managers should strive to create an environment where team members feel safe to express their thoughts. By encouraging honest feedback, managers can identify areas for growth and drive positive change.
Remember, the effectiveness of these questions relies on fostering a safe and inclusive environment where team members feel comfortable sharing their perspectives.
7. Foster a micro-culture
Your team operates as a small-scale society. Each member relies on the others, united in pursuit of shared goals. You support and uplift each other, whether shielding one another from criticism or gently pushing each other toward progress. Your meetings present invaluable opportunities to fortify your team's principles and foster personal connections - a chance to strengthen your collective.
Therefore, foster dialogue and establish an environment where everyone feels at ease expressing their thoughts on the company and its direction. Have fun witnessing your team crack jokes or utter daring proposals.
Sparrks resources will help managers learn the art of organizing, structuring, and conducting a purposeful meeting. From 25 coaching topics, four target learning goals related to leading or contributing to effective team meetings. These coaching topics are as follows:
By booking one or more coaching topics, managers will unlock coachable techniques that will help them foster impactful meetings.
FAQ: How to conduct team meetings properly
How does someone start a meeting the right way?
The first thing a meeting host should do is welcome everyone to a meeting. The host should greet everyone warmly, carry on a personal introduction, and acknowledge the presence of each participant.
How does someone end a meeting the right way?
To end a meeting effectively:
- Recap key points.
- Address action items.
- Allow for questions.
- Express gratitude.
- Confirm the next steps.
- End on a positive note.
What is the order of an agenda?
An agenda typically follows a structured order to ensure an organized meeting flow. It typically includes the following components:
- Opening and welcome
- Approval of minutes
- Updates and announcements
- Discussion topics
- Action items and next steps
- Additional agenda items
While the order may vary based on the specific meeting's purpose and dynamics, following a structured agenda promotes efficiency.