Meeting Mistakes to Avoid

Meetings may look different now, but the ways we conduct them haven’t changed much. Whether your team is online, in-person, or hybrid, you are probably experiencing the same issues that employees were facing years ago. We’ve all heard the grievances of “Why do I need to be here?” and “This could have easily been an email.” But the question is, why are we still holding meetings that accomplish so little? 

Checking in with your team should help progress your business, not hold it back. To help change your weekly cadences from boring to brilliant, here are 5 key mistakes to avoid when setting up your  meetings:

          1. Monday blues.

We hate placing blame on Mondays, but sometimes the old adages are true. Mondays and Fridays should not be your first choice when scheduling meetings. Although you may want to kickstart the week on the same page, or wrap up progress before the weekend, try to avoid scheduling meetings the first and last day of your work week. Your employees will be more receptive to ideas and actions when discussing them mid-week.


          2. No plan? That’s a problem.

One of the worst things you can do is have a meeting just for the sake of meeting. When you go into a conference or meeting, you should always have an agenda of relevant topics that need discussion. Any topic that does not pertain to the decided-upon subject should be reviewed and added to the agenda of a separate meeting.


           3. The more the (not so) merrier.

You have important work to do. We all know that. So why are we continuously pulled into meetings that have nothing to do with our work? Covering your bases is a good idea when addressing critical issues, but adding team members to meeting invites just to keep them in the loop isn’t always the best use of their time, or use. 

No one likes feeling that their time is being wasted. Not. One. Person.

When adding employees to the meeting invite, be judicial in selecting the group. If the agenda isn’t directly associated with someone’s job function, exclude them from the event. You can always create an actionable item(s)  list that can be sent to a member
~ in an email ~.


          4. Doing everything at once.

Once you are in a meeting, your focus should remain on the topic being discussed. Being distracted with multitasking prevents you from engaging with and addressing what is being discussed. Make sure to silence notifications on whatever smart device you bring to the meeting and only have important tabs open on your laptop or tablet. Once you’re able to focus on the subject matter, meeting topics can be addressed in a quick and easy manner, leaving you with plenty of time to finish your work!


          5. Arriving late to the party.

Extenuating circumstances aside, if you’re chronically late to meetings, you are probably contributing to the unproductive nature of routine sync-ups. Some tardiness is expected, but if you can, try to alert meeting attendees of your delay. Any distraction added to meetings can easily derail the agenda and throw off the groove. 


Let’s face it: we’ll always have meetings at work and they’ll never go the way we planned. But that doesn’t mean we can try to improve how we go about them. With a few adjustments and active care, meetings can go from annoying wastes of time to productive collaborative experiences.


For more information on how can help transform your meetings, click here.