Meetings-Are you doing them right?
April 10, 2015
Meetings-Are you doing them right?
“If you had to identify, in one word, the reason why the human race has not achieved, and never will achieve, its full potential, that word would be 'meetings.” – (Barry, 1998)
How many of us have walked out of meeting rooms, still trying to figure out what really happened inside?
Before we begin, let’s first describe what meetings are exactly. A meeting is a gathering of two or more people that has been convened for the purpose of achieving a common goal through verbal interaction, such as sharing information or reaching agreement. Meetings may occur face to face or virtually, as mediated by various technological tools.
What’s the problem?
It’s a common consensus these days among people walking out of conference room after attending business meetings. Meetings are challenging for every individual, especially if they are poorly run. The common reason why most meetings fail is because they fail to stick to the agenda. As a matter of fact, there often is no agenda. (Bleich, 2014)
Project managers often fail to properly design and facilitate effective meetings, leading to reasons of frustration among those involved. People hate meetings and if given a choice, they rather skip it than walk into another one. The loss of value from poorly managed meetings includes monetary losses running into thousands of dollars, lack of commitment and trust between those involved and also most importantly in terms critical time wasted.(Pickett,2014)
What’s the solution?
Understanding how meetings run, and learning certain key skills to be used consistently, can not only save time and money but also keeps team members and key stakeholders invested into the project delivery high quality results.
To understand it better, let’s take an example of a meeting required to be arranged for an
IT company- XYZ Inc. which is planning to implement a new e-mail application system. The new email application will be easy to use with seamless integration to company’s Customer
Relationship Management (CRM) system. I am assigned as the project manager for this project with the Vice President (Sales) as a Sponsor.
The project has already been initiated and we are currently in the planning phase of the project struggling to decide whether we should develop the application in-house with our internal team of developers or purchase a hosted email application system from an outside vendor.
Meeting Type-Working/Problem Solving
The focus of this meeting is to decide between two options that will help the organization in the long term and suffice benefits that will keep it close to organization’s goals and standards.
The flow of communication in these types of meetings is mostly two-way among those involved.
These meetings could run for anywhere between 1-3 hours. The deliverable will be an action plan or decision.
The 5 P’s of Meeting
Purpose- The purpose of this meeting is to decide between two options available for choosing an email application system for the organization. The change in email-application is
vital to the growth and expansion of organization as the previous application is not capable of handling more employees. The application being used currently is obsolete, unsecure and incompatible with the Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system.
The new applications will not only provide an easy to use interface with state of the art technology but also improved storage space with relevant security. It will also be integrated with the company’s CRM system providing users the ease of accessibility across multiple platforms.
Organization has to decide whether they want to develop the email application system inhouse or use the services of hosted application system from an outside vendor. This decision is vital to the project as it will help plan out the scope of the project.