Setting up the Meeting – Setting the Agenda
Use an email invite or telephone. Be sure the agenda is very clear.
We’re meeting to decide this-that-and-the-other, and determine this-that-and-the-other.
The result will be a better this-that-and-the-other.
Or better still:
- Agenda Item 1
- Agenda item 2
- Agenda item 3
Duration: 90 minutes
Set the meeting time to start at 10am if at all possible.
Most people function more creatively at 10 in the morning. And they’ll have had a chance to do their email, and plan the meeting before a 10 o’clock start.
If people have to travel a long way, then start at 11 o’clock.
Don’t have a meeting after lunch if at all possible. Bodies are too busy digesting food to donate oxygen-rich blood to the old grey matter. Afternoons are much better spent doing intellectual work, like writing reports.
If you have to have an afternoon meeting, then don’t have lunch yourself. Someone has to stay peppy to keep the energy level in the meeting flowing.
Similarly if the meeting runs over lunchtime, then by all means arrange for sandwiches to be sent in, but eat hardly anything yourself.
There’s nothing worse than an after-lunch session where people are struggling to get it together because they’re so stuffed with food.
Make sure tea and coffee are freely available during the meeting. People often need a kick-start.
From now on, always ensure that you:
- Set an agenda in advance.
- Show the time and expected duration of the meeting.
- Fix for a 10am or 11am start
- Don’t eat before or during meetings