With today?s sophisticated work methods –
teleconferencing for example – it is of paramount
importance to ensure that the meeting is productive
and doesn?t lapse into a useless waste of time.

Care should be taken to steer the proceedings in a
useful and interesting way to ensure full
participation of all the attendees. After all, what is
the point of holding a meeting where all anybody
remembers is how bored they were!?

Consider first what the aim of the meeting is. Perhaps
you want to develop an idea, or solve a problem, or
find a way to increase productivity. For more than one
aim an agenda is probably a good idea.

If you are not a good host, find or employ a
professional who can direct the meeting and keep the
?flow? going. He may ask participants in turn to
contribute to the subject making it more interesting
and more productive.

Tip colleagues or workers may contribute more to a
stranger asking questions since they do not want to be
seen as evasive. Office politics do not come into play
with a stranger.

Communicate to the participants well beforehand what
the objective of the meeting is – send them the agenda
– and outline what you expect them to contribute.

During and after the meeting state the decisions and
conclusions that have been reached so that everyone is
very clear on the progress being made.

Finally, send out a copy of the discussion to ensure
that there was indeed a ?meeting of minds?.