In your Middle Market company, who keeps your meetings on track? Who is responsible to make sure your meetings are driving innovation and collaboration? Do you leave it up to each person who runs the meeting? Is there a documented, overall process to ensure meeting success?
Do you train or educate your C-Suite, leaders and managers on how to hold a successful meeting? Or, do you believe they already have those necessary skills? How do you measure meeting success? Where is it tracked? How do you know when you’ve lost effectiveness? It might be a subject you’ve never explored. However, to hold fewer, yet more successful meetings, you’ll need start.
It’s important to remember leaders don’t come with an innate ability and knowledge in every aspect of leadership. They need to develop and refine their skills. Masterfully leading a meeting is just another one on the list.
Therefore, don’t assume all your leaders can recognize when a meeting has gone sideways or how to gauge success. If you’ve ever been to a boring, blah or unsuccessful meeting, you know how important it is to prevent these from happening. You also know that not every manager or leader is a great speaker or capable of effectively leading a meeting. But, you can help them develop these skills and you can provide a solid framework for meetings to run off.
Your Middle Market firm doesn’t need a 50-page manual on how to run meetings, but you could probably benefit from having an outline of how a meeting should proceed. You also can add in timelines or limits for major meeting sections as well as guidelines for measuring success and keeping forward momentum. You may want to begin by gathering your leaders and managers and having a discussion about what makes a successful meeting and how the meeting leader can direct one.
Once you have an idea of how meetings should proceed, make sure all necessary staff in your organization are given the information. When new employees come onboard, make sure they know how your meetings are run – you’ll not only put them at ease, you’ll help ensure they are on the same page from the start.
Hold Meeting Leaders Accountable
Too often meetings are either unnecessary or unproductive. They can be subjective and hard to quantify but to be successful, meetings need to have results and output. Therefore, someone needs to have accountability for the meeting and its results. While they won’t have negative consequences, it is key your teams understand that meetings can’t be a waste of time. Meeting leaders will need to be responsible for producing some results and to ensure the validity of the meeting.
It may not need to be documented formally, but meetings should have a desired outcome and the meeting leader should ensure they can evaluate if the outcome was met and/or what needs to be done in the future to be more successful. By putting a focus on the results of the meeting, you’ll likely find fewer meetings take place and more productive sessions occur.
Your Middle Market firm can only benefit from knowing what a successful meeting looks like and how to achieve the desired results. Spending the time to document and share education on successful meetings will help to have more productive sessions.
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