Every time we start a new project, there are a few key things to remember. The protocol is: we want to discuss an ongoing task, to check how our team is working together, or sometimes just to see how the development of the company is unfolding, and we usually resort to the usual traditional meeting.
But in some cases, the meeting can have minimal value, if not planned and organized, even before it gets started. It is important to have a few guidelines that will assist the entire team to have a more productive and straightforward meeting.
1. Topic. The first aspect we need to consider is the topic of the meeting. If you have more than one topic, it would be ideal to schedule one meeting for each of these topics. If the company is running a project, the ideal is to break this project down into phases of development and establish one meeting for each of these phases.
For example, the website redesign of enfusionize™ is a big project that was divided into five phases, and each one of them can represent a topic for future meetings:
Website Copy: creation ; Video: strategy, scripts, and creation ; Promotional Material: strategy, discuss types of giving away, copywriting ; Email Marketing Strategy: Opt-In Pages, Thank You Page, Squeeze Pages, email auto responder process ; Landing Pages: (for PPC and other strategies)
2. Choose a Host. The second suggestion is to choose someone to lead the meeting. This person would be responsible to provide interaction between the other members of the team. He can serve as a host, someone who will lead and ask questions to others (previously written questions) and make sure that everybody will share their ideas.
3. Keep a Record. Have someone record and take notes about the meeting. This person would be someone who wouldn’t participate actively but would contribute by taking notes, formulating questions, and writing their own impressions about the meeting. At the end of the meeting, this person will meet separately with the meeting leader to add key points to the conversation that just happened.
4. Discuss. Give every member the opportunity to talk about what they have accomplished, what they will do from this point forward, and if they have any suggestions for the development of the project.
5. To-Do List. Establish a solid to-do list of tasks that will be accomplished from this point forward, set delivery dates, and choose who will be responsible to build up the next activities that are related to this specific project.
There are many ways to effectively run a meeting, but in a nutshell, organization is the key. If everyone has the chance to participate, share their thoughts, and feel valued, this makes it much easier to create a great environment for brainstorming new ideas.
Try to find your own ways to stimulate your team and establish an organized and productive meeting even before you schedule a date for it. This will guarantee more interaction, more ideas, and less wasted time.