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Wednesday, November 1, 2017


Meetings can be so boring. Add an overheated room, a full tummy and someone who just drones on and on and on, and you'll probably struggle to keep your eyes open. Typical employees spend between 35 percent and 60 percent of their workdays in meetings, so making meetings more interesting and less doze-worthy should be an aspiration of every manager. Managers, in case you think your meetings are just fine as they are, note what your employees are doing during meetings, according to American City Business Journals:
  • Missing the meeting: 96 percent 
  • Missing parts of the meeting: 95 percent 
  • Daydreaming: 91 percent 
  • Doing other work in the meeting: 73 percent 
  • Dozing off during a meeting: 39 percent 

What can you do to prevent dozing or multi-tasking at your next meeting? American City Business Journals offer eight strategies to keep your employees awake and engaged:

1. Change your meeting length
Instead of a one-hour meeting, schedule it for 30 minutes.

2. Start your meeting 15 minutes after the hour
Too often, employees go right from one meeting to another. Start yours at 15 after the hour to give folks a break that will allow them to be fresher for your meeting.

3. Honor everyone's time
start and finish on time. If people come in late, don't recap what they missed as it's their responsibility to find out.

4. Get rid of the chairs
Have everyone stand around high-top tables. This allows them to use their laptops and tablets, but if they're standing, they will be more efficient. What once took an hour will drop to 40 or 45 minutes when people are standing.

5. Do away with the movie watchers
Only invite people to your meeting who add something of value to the discussion. Don't include people who are late, don't contribute or spend the time checking email.

6. Clearly define the objective prior to the meeting
if everyone knows in advance what is supposed to take place at the meeting, each person will be more focused and on task.

7. Do a recap
As the meeting concludes, review the assigned action items and deadlines. Discuss the date and time of the next meeting.

8. Make your meetings fun
Occasionally, surprise your employees with something unexpected. American City Business Journals cite an example of a CFO who places a $20 bill on the table and tells a riddle. Whoever solves the riddle first gets the money. This also encourages people to be on time.

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