Meetings are essential in any company or organization. They allow people to either plan for an upcoming activity, talk about the formulation of goals for a particular event or time frame or even go over the details of a project that has just been executed or launched. The concept is simple – with more heads and voices being pooled together for one project, the resulting ideas and strategies are likely to be better and more representative of the collective whole.
With many people in a meeting, it’s quite easy to have it a bit confusing. Here are ways to make sure that you’re not going to be the one to be the cause of the problems. Here’s how you behave while in a meeting with colleagues:
- If your meeting does not have a moderator, try to talk people into electing one. The moderator’s main job is to control the flow of the discussion and make sure that the group is not derailed by things that are not in the agenda. If you’re the moderator your role is to make sure that people who want to talk will get the chance to say their piece during the time that they want to be heard. It’s quite a challenge but get used to it. A moderator must be in control of the group and must alert those who are needlessly dominating the conversation.
- Listen. Active and passing listening skills go a long way during meetings. These techniques allow you to figure out which points have already been discussed. You could also build on some points to strengthen them or you constructively critique some of the ideas of your colleagues in a manner that is neither offensive nor personally insulting.
- Be ready to chip in your two cents at any given time. You’re in the meeting not just to agree with everything that has been said. You should also give your opinions if you’re given the floor at any point. To make sure that your time on the floor is not wasted, try to be as well informed as possible before the meeting starts. Take down notes of the things that have been talked about so you could easily refer to them when it’s your time to talk.
- When it’s not your time to talk, always pay attention to the person who is talking. Always think about how you feel if somebody else were to do something totally unrelated. Keep your mobile phone and other electronic devices turned off or on silent mode to make sure that there would be no unnecessary impediments to the smooth flow of the meeting.
If all members attending the meeting would take these tips to heart, it would be a much more productive and more pleasant meeting for everyone. Always remember these pointers whenever you have a meeting. You may post them in the room where you have the meet ups to ensure that nobody forgets these salient points during the next meetings.