Why am I at this meeting anyway?

Have you ever found yourself sitting in a meeting wondering why you are there?  Or what the outcome of the meeting was supposed to be?  Or, was this meeting was really called to plan for the upcoming meeting?

We can all contribute to a better work life balance and meeting culture if we would establish a few personal ground rules:

  • Don’t attend a meeting if you don’t receive an agenda in advance
  • Don’t attend a meeting if you don’t know why you are going (what is the purpose of the meeting?)
  • Don’t stay at a meeting that doesn’t start on time
  • Don’t stay at a meeting longer than the planned ending time

Some people in your office may get upset with you at first but if they understand the goal is to hold better, more effective meetings maybe the message will bet through and others will appreciate your taking a leadership role in making that happen.

Here are some simple meeting guidelines to follow (my thanks to John Roskopf for his contribution to this list):

  • Establish the amount of time needed to complete the meeting objectives
  • Invite only those people who can positively contribute to the meeting objective
  • Use meeting invitation software to schedule meetings
  • The meeting request should include an agenda, a meeting objective and list of invitees
  • Start on time and finish on time
  • Do not get sidetracked by extraneous discussions.
  • Use a “Who-What-When” form to establish next steps and track follow-up actions
  • The meeting organizer should document the results of the meeting and any required actions with all participants

I am going to make better use of my time!



Dave Baney is the founder and CEO of 55 Questions, LLC. We work with successful top executives with a driving ambition to crush their competition. We help CEOs and Entrepreneurs improve alignment, communication and accountability throughout their organization. 55Questions.com

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