Quick Tips on Preparing a Meeting Agenda

A successful meeting needs to have a proper and meaningful agenda. If you want to impress the clients and impress them, then having a strategy in mind is important. You have to decide on the agenda before having the meeting with your prospective clients. There are three essential elements to keep in mind- the guide, the plan and the roadmap. In several researches, it has become evident that in most of the meetings, there is no agenda.

Quick Tips

Even if there is one, it is poorly orchestrated; hence, many people do not understand it. Here we tell you certain steps to take to make sure that your meeting is successful in terms of having a proper agenda. By following these steps your meeting will eventually become more productive. These advantages will become your reasons for making a difference and impressing your boss and colleagues. And, if you successfully execute the agendas, then you will also wrap up the meeting in no time without wasting anyone’s time.

Here are some easy tips to follow.

  • Remember the key points for the meeting. Make a list of them and revise them at least one week before the meeting. You have the responsibility of knowing them properly. You must have a reason for conducting the meeting. Remember it and say it in a detailed manner. This will make the agenda clear in the beginning of the meeting; hence you will not lose track or divert while the meeting is in progress.
  • If the agenda of the meeting has the possibility of changing the core functions of the organisation, you will have to give the members more time to ponder over it. You cannot expect to get amazing response then and there. You can prepare the agenda and send it out beforehand. This will make sure that the other members in the team come up with effective suggestions and feedback.
  • Do not discuss anything else except the agenda on hand. This will keep you on track and help you stay focused. Do not divert by talking about something else. If you have your agenda clear in your head, you will not get distracted. Do not get influenced by anyone else and stick to your goals.
  • Have a time period for every step for the meeting. This essentially means that you send out the agendas in the morning to everyone. Then at say around afternoon, you have the meeting. Allot a time period for your presentation and meeting as well. You do not want to exhaust everyone by the end of the meeting.
  • Eliminate general business from your schedule at the time of the meeting. On the day of the meeting, focus on what is in hand rather than your plans in the evening or afternoon.
  • Make sure that you have your correspondence divided into three categories: junk, decision and information only. Dispose of the junk, information should be read on a daily basis and on the basis of that, you can make your decisions.

How to Know if You’re Drafting Meeting Agendas Correctly?

Drafting meeting agendas is not for everyone. Or certainly not for anyone who is looking for a short way out of organising meetings. There is a kind of skill and art required to make the agenda comprehensive and to the point at the same time. In the length of the document it is also important to not get carried away from the topic. The more the number of people involved in the making of the agenda the less biased it will be, so a group of senior managers should ideally sit together and pitch in.

Draft Meeting Agendas

A few other things to remember are mentioned below.

Goals of the Company and Goals of the Individual

One of the challenges that come upon managers drafting the agenda is how much weightage need to be given to each topic. Deciding on this can be quite a task and lead to disagreements because each manager is likely to see their area of expertise as the most important. For instance a marketing manager will stress more on sales while an HR manager will lay more importance on recruiting, for the simple reason that a department’s progress will mean promotion for the manager.

Good managers will not just look at short term positives of the agendas they put forward but see that long term benefit of their proposal. Most people in the meeting can see through hidden motives anyway. If the managers’ concern is genuine and for the better of the company, most people will vouch for it any which way. Managers shouldn’t blow things out of proportion only to make a mark in the meeting.

Putting Forward an Agenda for the Real Benefit

First off you’ll need to put all your biases aside and approach the agenda with a calm and cool disposition. That is the only way to get some effective work done. This is a very important process in teamwork. It is okay to let one person lead the meeting as long as he is bringing original content to the table, is able to voice most people’s concern and in general approaches the whole situation with zero biases.

Streamlining

The second step forward to put everything together. You’ll need to make sense of all the voices that are pitching in. If two issues seem to connect in some way, consolidate them into one point. This is necessary for the understanding of any third person who steps in to get an overview. Once you have put the points in order, step back to see the fluff that you can eliminate from the agenda. Remove all things you see as unnecessary or repetitive.

Overall Examination

  • Have all the points been listed in the order of importance?
  • What kind of change are you looking at? Will this agenda be able to meet those needs?
  • How will the agenda benefit the company?

It is of prime importance that you ensure your meeting has added some value to each department and benefited the company in general, even if in a small way.