Part 1: Better EmailsPart 2: Better ConversationsPart 3: Better Meetings

Have a clear agenda and objective.

Don’t go into a meeting without a goal, or else you’ll find yourself stumbling around a few points for a while, without really achieving anything. Make a list of things you wish to cover, and what you hope to get out of the meeting.


Ask the group to clarify key points.

Make sure your audience has understood everything that’s been said, so you can be positive they’ll go away knowing what to do next. Check they know their role; nobody should be in the meeting if they don’t have a role to play.


Work through conflict.

It’s important not to get bogged down with differing opinions, as this can distract from the main point and stop the meeting from continuing in a timely fashion. If there are any major issues, make a note to circle back to them after the meeting with only the people it concerns. This avoids wasting anyone else’s time.


elicit opinions from others.

Don’t just stand there and tell everyone what you think. Let them chip in, and validate their opinions if you agree with them. That way, nobody leaves feeling unheard or ignored. Ask questions, such as; ‘What are your thoughts?’ ‘How can we improve this?’ ‘Any ideas?’ And don’t just go with the first answer, make sure to ask multiple people the same question.


Check to make sure everyone is paying attention.

If a meeting is going for a while, but you haven’t covered everything, check to make sure people aren’t getting distracted, and even give everyone a quick break, or continue the meeting another day. The longer people spend discussing a matter, the less they pay attention as time goes on. Shorter, more frequent meetings are more effective, so limit meetings to a few key points.


come to a conclusion and clarify next steps.

You had a goal, so make sure you achieved it by quickly summarising what you learnt, and what is going to happen next. Then follow up the meeting to make sure everyone has done what was agreed.

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