Let’s be honest: office meetings can be a huge waste of time. Listening to your boss babble about things that have little to do with you can affect your productivity and put you in a bad mood. Not to mention, meetings tend to go the same way every time. You complain about the things that aren’t working in the company, you struggle to come up with some ideas, and resume the meeting with more work than you can deliver.
But, that doesn’t have to be the standard recipe for office meetings. Here are some ideas that can help keep employees alert and engaged during an important meeting.
Assemble the Right Team
A lot of managers see office meetings as a necessary evil and assume that all team leaders should attend. But, try to think about it this way: group meetings can be extremely costly for your business. If the top ten people in your company attend hour-long meetings that have little to nothing to do with them instead of focusing on growing the business, then that’s a huge expense for you.
One of the primary rules of effective office meetings is ensuring that the people that take part in them can actually contribute with ideas and solutions.
Have an Agenda and Stick to It
More often than not, managers begin the meeting with a clear agenda in mind, but divert from it and begin discussing different company problems. Yes, it’s important to address every issue that may hinder the growth and profitability of the company, but try to understand that you can’t solve every problem in one meeting. Stick to the topics you’ve outlined in your agenda and schedule a few minutes at the end of the meeting for discussing other problems.
Start the Meeting on a Positive Note
Instead of just stating today’s agenda, try to start the meeting by playing a fun game. For example, you could ask the attendees to talk about something they did that allowed them to operate at their best and thrive in their careers. By having your employees relieve a moment they cherish and share it with their colleagues, you can ensure that the meeting will continue on a positive note. Not only that attendees will feel more connected to each other, but they will also become eager to start working and prove their skills once again.
Almost everyone doodles during long and boring office meetings. But, here’s the thing: this habit isn’t just a way to kill time and waste office paper. Studies show that doodling can boost creativity, improve short and long-term memory, as well as increase attention span.
So, instead of getting annoyed at the employees that doodle while you’re presenting the company’s goals for the next year, take advantage of the benefits doodling have on the human mind. Give your participants a few sheets of paper and encourage them to sketch their ideas.
Talking about paper, make sure that the stock you’re using comes from an environmentally-responsible manufacturer that employs sustainable practices. Double A Paper, for example, grows its own trees on unused strips of land between rice paddies and pay the farmers for it. They also make sure to use only high-quality pulp so that the result is a smooth and reliable paper.