One thing you are taught in all project management training courses is the importance of regular meetings. Depending on the size and nature of your project, weekly meetings at a minimum are required. However, simply hosting a meeting is not enough, you need to make sure it is a success. There is no point in having a long and lengthy discussion if you feel like nothing has been achieved at the end. With that being said, continue reading to discover some top tips for successful project meetings.
Start and finish on time – A longer meeting is not a more effective meeting, which is why you should schedule a time. Moreover, make sure that you start when you have said you are going to and finish when you say you are going to. There is nothing more frustrating than having to wait for people to turn up, and then finishing half an hour later than planned.
Make sure the environment is a comfortable one – If you host the meeting in a room with uncomfortable seating, no air conditioning, or no water available, you are going to have an unproductive meeting on your hands. You need people to be comfortable if they are going to be at their best.
Get the right people to attend the meeting – There is no point in inviting everyone to the meeting. Moreover, while the core project team is usually invited, there could be meetings that centre on one element of the project, and, therefore, it may be necessary to invite other people.
Ensure meeting papers are not too lengthy – One of the biggest mistakes you can make is giving your employees mountains of papers. There is no bigger de-motivator than having to go through page after page of detail. Not to mention, this is usually a waste of time, and a waste of resources. Instead, keep everything concise – one-page maximum is a good rule. You may want to use the simple yet effective traffic light system, i.e. red for any major problems, amber for moderate or potential issues, and green for the things that are going well.
Set an agenda for the meeting – If you do not have an agenda in place, the meeting will drift, you will go off track, spend hours on end in the meeting room, and you will end up feeling like you have not achieved anything. Thus, make sure you produce and circulate an agenda in advance. A day or two before the meeting is advisable.
Set objectives – Last but not least, one of the most important things to do is set objectives for the meeting. It is common for meetings to take place and you leave feeling like you have achieved nothing. This is because there were not any clear goals in place beforehand.
If you take note of the tips that have been mentioned above, you can be certain that your next meeting is going to be a much greater success. The importance of this cannot be ignored. After all, meetings are a critical component in the success of any project.