Who among us loves long, drawn-out meetings? No one. Yet somehow the people managing meetings seem to think that longer must mean more productive. I am on the side of less is more. Here are my tips on how to make meetings shorter and get better results, and they center around the planning process.
Have a specific agenda that includes key discussion points.
• Send out the agenda in advance so attendees know what to expect.
• Start on time, end on time. It’s really just another discipline.
• Anything off topic is discussed later.
• Anything that is does not involve all meeting attendees is discussed later.
• If appropriate, ask subject experts to provide necessary information to the group.
• Set a timeframe for each discussion point.
This article offers 6 Ways to Make Meetings Go Faster. Personnally, I like the last way: don’t schedule a meeting at all! Time is so valuable that without a specific purpose, meetings can be more habit than productive.