Every company has meetings. Whether they be conducted in a meeting room, a hallway or in the form of a teleconference or videoconference, they usually happen on a regular basis. Some of the things that a business leader or department head can do that will minimize the effectiveness of a business meeting and make them non-productive are included in this article.
When it comes to decision making, meetings can be used to avoid responsibility. One person not wanting to make a critical decision alone can hide behind the guise of having a group of people come to a consensus to make a decision.
By bringing several people together it can gather much needed input and direction yet, unless the good input is utilized, it will have a tendency to create ill will and feeling of non importance among the meeting participants. The importance and value of future meeting participation will be jeopardized by this type of leadership.
I once worked for a company where the owner consistently held meetings and rarely acted upon the input that was being offered by his independent contractors. He would imply that he would take action and 99% of the time wouldn’t. It wasn’t long before people only attended the meetings to stay on good terms with him. They knew it was really a meaningless use of their time and added to their frustration levels with the organization.
Hidden agendas are another way to sabotage meetings. When the people participating are not up front and honest about their reasons for pursuing a particular agenda item, more non productivity and office politics can be the result. This form of miscommunication can be very unproductive and should be avoided.
When you count up the amount of hours a meeting lasts and multiply it times the number of people in the meeting, it adds up to a significant amount of man hours. Being guilty of using any of the above practices can lead to wasteful meetings and will tie up valuable time of the attendees that can be used else wise more productively. It is up to the business owner or manager to do his or her best not to let this happen.
How about you? Are there any idea or suggestions you have for small business owners who are having problems running productive meetings? Let me know. I want to hear your ideas.