10 tips to stop wasting time in meetings

As we approach the end of the year, entrepreneurs and business people have come to an important conclusion: we need to develop a new culture of work . Phenomena such as virtuality and remote work present us with enormous challenges. One of them is how to have more productive meetings, whether in person or online.

Meetings that are held through video conferencing platforms have many advantages; How to avoid having to travel to the company or another meeting point , since this does not imply expenses (such as breakfast or lunch); In addition, it allows documents to be shared and corrected on the spot, and can be recorded and sent later with those who could not attend. The problem is that, and in this way they are similar to face-to-face meetings, they can become too long meetings where much is said and little is decided .

How then to stop wasting time in any of the two scenarios? With these 10 tips that we share below.

  1. Define and communicate the agenda of topics in advance

It is essential to limit the number of points to be discussed in the meeting so that attention and conversation are not scattered.

  1. Send invitations and reminders on time

To ensure the participation of the attendees, they must be sent at least one week before a notice about the day and time of the meeting. If it is going to be virtual, you have to include the link and the access codes at once . Don’t forget the reminders.

  1. Use the right platform

Today there are many tools like Zoom , Google Meet and Skype that are flexible, secure and easy to use. Investigate what advantages the paid version of each platform offers and if you need it or not.

  1. Make sure everyone is ready for the meeting

If it is a very important meeting; For example, with a client or a new partner, hold a 10-minute briefing meeting the day before with the employees who will participate.

  1. Communicate who will lead the board

It can be the owner of the company, the general manager or the person in charge of the project that is going to be discussed at the meeting. This person will announce the topics to be discussed, give the floor and will be able to mute the microphones on the online platform when necessary.

  1. Start and end the meeting within the schedule

It is a sign of professionalism, seriousness and respect for those who connected on time; This also applies in virtuality.

  1. Illustrates ideas, concepts, and processes

Virtuality limits the information we can capture through non-verbal language or the ability to ask a question when we don’t understand something. For this reason, use graphics, infographics or other types of images that you consider useful and relevant.

  1. Share documents on the fly

A very common mistake in virtual meetings is to promise to send documentation later . This avoids being able to review it during the meeting, analyze it and base decision making. Anticipate these situations .

  1. Check how the meeting is progressing

If you are leading the meeting, make sure everyone is participating . Every so often pause and ask questions, such as: “Is everything clear so far?”, “Does anyone not feel comfortable with any point of agreement?”, “Do you feel that we are making progress?”

  1. Write a minute of the meeting

It is vital that there is a person in charge of recording the points discussed : what were the decisions that were made , what are the next tasks and who will be the people commissioned to follow them up.