You likely fall into two groups of people when it comes to office meetings. If you’re part of what we’ll call Group #1, you dread meeting day. It takes you away from your daily work, throws off your schedule and ruins the rest of your day. Group #2 people enjoy office meeting day. You love getting away from your desk for a few minutes, stretching your legs on the walk up the stairs and socializing with your coworkers.
Does any of this sound familiar?
While they may or may not be your favorite part of the work week, regularly scheduled meetings are necessary in business. A productive office functions like a well-oiled machine, with each person doing their part to add to the whole.
Team meetings are an integral part of your practice because they keep everyone on the same page, unite you in common goals, ensure that no work is going undone and increase office potential.
Here we’ve put together a list of ways to make the most out of your office meetings.
- Come prepared
If your office has regularly scheduled weekly, biweekly or monthly meetings, then you already know the structure. If your employer sends out an agenda ahead of time, look it over and review anything that concerns you in particular. Ask yourself these key questions: Are you having any issues this month? What solutions can you bring to the table? Showing up prepared and knowledgeable and ready to speak on your own topics and issues sends a message that you care about the success of the office.
Bring a pen and paper so you can take information away from the meeting and apply it to your daily work. Taking notes during a meeting lets your employer and your coworkers know that you take whatever they have to say seriously.
Realize that your employer would not take you away from your important work if it wasn’t important. Put away your cell phone, and give the meeting leader your full attention. If you have a special reason to be looking at your phone, it’s professional to tell someone ahead of time why. Otherwise, put it away and send the message that you are present and ready to focus on what’s being presented.
- Speak up
Whether you’re the presenter or just attending a meeting, everyone is encouraged to speak and participate. Meetings can seem much less daunting or boring when you are an active participant. You can also use these meetings as a platform to make important announcement or voice any concerns you have.
- Keep distractions to a minimum
When you speak, it needs to be to the entire group, not on the side, if at all possible. Try to make your points at the right time in the meeting or make note that you will have a point at a later time. This speeds up the meeting time and allows everyone to get the most out of the meeting.
The most important part of any meeting is to take the information presented and apply it to your daily routine. If you do not apply new strategies and techniques, then meetings truly are a waste of time. New information is meant to improve the office’s productivity, which will benefit everyone.