The top mistakes that lead to unproductive meetings
When meetings take an unproductive turn, its not only the organizer that is wasting time— the productivity of all attendants is compromised. A survey conducted by OfficeTeam, a workplace research firm, found managers said that 28 percent of scheduled meetings are unproductive.
If there are eight attendees at an hour long meeting that turns unproductive, it is the same as losing an entire day of work for the organization. To avoid this significant drain on resources and productivity, Geoffrey James, author of "Business Wisdom of the Electronic Elite," talked to Inc.com about some of the top mistakes managers make when conducting their meetings.
- Discouraging participation: Managers should trust in the ability of their team, and recognize that their input is valuable. When one or two speakers dominate the conversation, managers could be missing valuable perspective. Encourage participation from all attendees, and ask shy or quiet team members direct questions to get them involved.
- Excessive industry jargon: Using words such as "leverage," bottom line," or "impact" is fine in moderation, but when a buzz-word is thrown into every sentence, it can negatively affect the credibility of a speaker. When addressing the team during a meeting, it is important to be direct, in order to keep the pace of the meeting productive.
- End on time. One of the most common complaints about meetings is that they start and end late, cutting into other tasks or projects. By implementing a strict agenda, attendants know their time will be respected, and they will be happier to go to a meeting.
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