Meetings: You’re doing them wrong

By Jamie Hooker

You probably don’t go through a day of work without hearing the word “meeting” at least three times. Meetings are a huge part of the workplace and can either be productive or pointless, depending on how you plan them. Here are some pro-tips to follow when you are planning and attending a meeting.

What’s the meeting for anyway?

When you call a meeting, make sure you do for a good reason. Have a specific topic or make a list of points you want to go over with your team ahead of time. Does what you want to talk about merit a meeting in the first place? Sometimes a simple email to your team is an easier way to keep everyone in the loop instead of pulling them away from their desks, which can stop productivity. Once you decide a meeting is necessary, make sure to stick to your agenda so the team doesn’t get off topic.

Mix it up a bit.

Consider holding your meeting somewhere besides the usual conference room. Our living room at Snackbox HQ can double as a meeting space and can be a nice change of pace (also, it’s comfier). If you’re office doesn’t have another space big enough for your team, take the meeting outside if weather permits or to the nearest coffee shop. Physically getting out of the office can boost moods and encourage more participation.

Will the real PR pros please stand up?

Bear with me on this one! Holding a meeting where everyone is standing sounds horrible at first, but could be beneficial to time management. Stand-up meetings are best for those beginning-of-the-day meetings for quick updates and getting everyone on the same page. Keeping everyone on their feet (literally) will keep the meeting short and sweet.

Pin that for later.

Staying on track with your agenda can be hard, especially when a lot of creative people are in one room. It’s easy for a productivity meeting to turn into a brainstorming session. Allow a couple of minutes for new ideas to be discussed, but then “pin” the ideas to talk about at the end of the meeting or in a separate meeting all together. It’s good to still encourage good ideas but you don’t want to get sidetracked.

Next time you’re planning a meeting, remember these tips and your co-workers will appreciate you!