Tips for Leading Meetings

  • Have a written statement of purpose so everyone knows why they are at the meeting…you should tell people ahead of time why you need them to attend the meeting!
  • Have a dedicated person to chair and guide the meeting process
  • Have a carefully planned agenda
  • Have ground rules for behavior, expect respect and courtesy despite contrary views
  • Thank everyone for coming
  • Start on time
  • End on time
  • Limit discussion and agree to disagree when appropriate
  • When making decisions aim for group consensus…they may not agree with the decision but can they live with it and support next steps moving forward
  • Remind everyone of the next meeting if need be
  • After the meeting write a brief summary of any decisions made, actions required and note who is responsible for what
  • Progress chase as the next meeting approaches…don’t wait until you are at the next meeting to find out your team did not do what they committed to doing…you have now wasted valuable time and lost momentum
  • Have fun, don’t take yourself too seriously

Things to keep in mind

  • In order to begin promptly invite members to “check in” by setting aside concerns and focusing on the task at hand. A five-minute go around of reporting concerns members need to set aside mentally helps people gather focus and get down to business
  • Clearly articulate the meeting objectives and let members know what results are expected.
  • Let members know who is responsible for what. Identify at the beginning of the meeting who is leading the meeting, the recorder, timekeeper etc...
  • Review your agenda with the group to make sure it is relevant to the meeting objectives. Be flexible you can add new items at this point.
  • At the end of the meeting review decisions made, actions agreed to and any open or unresolved issues.
  • Evaluate your meeting. Have a two minute discussion of what went well and what the group would like to see improved. Record the comments and address them in future meetings.