In Companys Hardly a day goes by without meetings. But many run haphazardly. It doesn't have to be, because with simple Regulate let them be more productive.

Efficient meetings

Meetingfrust instead of meetinglust?

Meetings have a significant impact on the day-to-day work of managers and employees at all levels. meetings and Communication are becoming increasingly important for professionals. They permeate all of our lives because they are so often part of our work.

But most People have some bad and some bad experiences with meetings and discussions. After all, who doesn't know that: appointments day in and day out, conference after conference, one meeting chase the next. That takes a lot of time and Energy – but the bottom line is that nothing tangible comes out of it.

Meetings: Many go in, little comes out?

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As a result, many people complain that meetings and discussions are inefficient. There is this beautiful quote "Many go in, little comes out." Unfortunately, that's actually true of many meetings.

There are a few reasons for this. For example, it is often boring to follow a long one Presentation to listen, and people spend more than ten minutes thinking about a Idea to think, although they should only spend five minutes on it if they want to be efficient.

Why meetings are important despite everything

Such meetings are important for very different purposes: we meet with colleagues to Shop to discuss, we meet with customersto that Projects to discuss and we meet with customers to discuss the product.

The fact is, meetings and discussions can be a great way to keep people connected, collaborate, and discover new ideas. Whether you're holding a monthly staff meeting or a department meeting, the benefits of a productive discussion are well known.

Efficient meetings: When the right strategy is missing

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But all too often, due to a lack of sensible planning, they become chaotic and ultimately end without tangible results. Meetings can also get quite chaotic due to the constant flow of information.

Meetings are therefore fast quite a nuisance in everyday working life. In fact, they can take an inordinate amount of time. If it's up to you Structure absent and following a rigid schedule, they can be even more problematic. To make them more efficient, you can use some of the following tips and Tricks apply.

Everyone can contribute to the success of a meeting

But: If a meeting goes without a result, that's it Debt not alone at Executive. Meetings are often stressful and inefficient because most people take them for granted and not necessary ones steps do to improve the flow of meetings.

And even in the age of PowerPoint, most meetings spin the same old way. Why not try a new approach? No more “all-or-nothing” fuss, pushing out ideas that aren't even on the table yet.

It doesn't have to be! Instead, take a deep breath, relax, and leave the meeting feeling positive. If you follow a few simple rules, your next sessions are guaranteed to be a full one Success.

7 tips for more productive meetings

It's always the same Problemsthat prevent meetings from being efficient. So that things will run better in the future and you no longer waste your valuable time with unsatisfactory meetings, I have put together the most important rules for successful meetings.

1. Focus: The goal is the way

One of the main obstacles to effective meetings is lack of them Objective. Therefore, define clear ones in the future Set – for every single item on the agenda. As a manager, you specify what has to be done by when; for the Implementation must they Employees to care.

It always depends on the focus: Today more than ever we are expected to do several things at once. From work to school, and even on the weekends, we're beset by appointments and requests. But what if instead of multitasking, we could only focus on one thing at a time?

2. Invite competent participants

It sounds banal, but is often negligently neglected: Again and again I experience that not the most relevant and competent people sit at the table. Accordingly, the meeting can not lead to results. Therefore, when you are grouping the group, be sure to invite the right employees - those who really have something to say about the topic - as well as the decision-making power.

Otherwise, the topics will be discussed endlessly and finally postponed. And how do you get that other departments do not send anything? By setting up a simple rule: what has been discussed and decided in the group applies and can not be undone.

3. Without a suitable moderator, nothing works

Even small discussion groups benefit from being led by a moderator. Otherwise there is a great risk that the participants will always digress from the core topic and discuss the “whether” instead of concentrating on the “how”. As a manager, do not take on the moderation, because otherwise you can hardly intervene sufficiently in terms of content.

Neutrality is usually advisable as the moderator has to mediate between the different points of view. If, on the other hand, it is not to be neutral, then choose one from the highest hierarchical group. In order for the moderator to fulfill his function, certain rights must be assigned to him. Above all, he should have the authority to curb dissolute speakers and reduce excessive discussions on the topic. It has proven very useful to limit the speaking time per participant and contribution to two minutes.

4. For everything a rule

In many companies, there are no binding guidelines for meetings, their success is left to chance. However, rules for a uniform approach are essential - only in this way can useful results be achieved. The most important are:

Leave these rules in every meeting room!

5. To clarify what it is about

We need to be able to effectively analyze and discuss the outcomes of meetings. In such meetings it is very important that communication and goal setting clear and is efficient.

If you want a meeting to go from “A” to “B” in a certain amount of time, you all need to know what those “A” and “B” means. It is therefore important to know who, where and for what purpose people are coming. So who is leading the meeting? Who does what? If a specific person leaves during a meeting, it is important that the others can understand the situation of the meeting, eg who should do what. In the end, you can use all of this information to make the meeting better.

Not infrequently, there is uncertainty about the (sub) topic to be addressed. Therefore, clarify what the next agenda item is, so that all participants are on a uniform stand. This is a maximum of five minutes. so they all get used to delivering shorter word contributions. If this predefined time passes without results, proceed to the next topic.

6. Include target groups

Unbelievable, but true: Very often, the target groups that the meeting is about are not even asked about their specific expectations. Ie The group should Solutions for problems from customers, for example, which were not sufficiently worked out in terms of content beforehand.

The discussion then takes place in the airless space, whereby the failure is naturally pre-programmed. Therefore, ensure that all relevant information is prepared and made available to the participants in good time before the meeting. Strategic statements from management regarding the facts are also helpful.

7. Discussions are not sprawling

Who has not yet experienced this? In the course of a meeting, the degree of complexity increases so strongly that nobody can see through. The reason for this is often that some participants talk without giving any substantial support - simply to make them say anything at all. If the discussion is so far outdated, the topic is then often delegated to working groups for lack of solubility. So that it does not come so far, you should

You can also limit the duration of the meeting in advance. Shorten the duration to eg 30 minutes. Typically, a meeting can last from half an hour to an hour, but that's too long. If a meeting is longer than 30 minutes, it's too long. This means you need to prepare the meeting well so everyone knows what to do.

If delegation of the topic is required, this should be linked to the project group with a clearly formulated work and solution mandate.

Extra tip: Structuring meetings with the Mind Map technique - and logging results

There are many ways to improve meetings and discussions. A good possibility is the result visualization. The contents of the meeting become transparent and tangible for all participants if they are continuously visualized (e.g. on a flip chart). The mind map is perfect for collecting ideasTechnology, which also reveals the inner connections of the topic. And this is the best way to do it: Draw a circle in the middle of the paper and write the topic in there.

Group members then collect the main issues and sub-issues related to them. In the third step, solutions for the individual problem areas are worked out. Finally, since this is often neglected, one more product. As a manager, create a log in which you record all relevant facts: work progress, (interim) results and open points that are to be dealt with in the next appointment.

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