Many employees complain about business meetings… some feel they’re too long, others perceive them as a waste of time, unnecessary or ineffective. Both internal and external meetings can waste your employees’ time and energy and as a result, a company’s financial resources.
In fact, according to a Clarizen survey, “employed Americans spend an average of 4.6 hours each week preparing for status meetings and 4.5 hours attending general status meetings.” Worse yet, many executives consider meetings to be activities that deliver low ROI — and limit their attendance strictly to employees considered vital to a meeting’s success in an attempt to bring overhead costs down.
However, taking time to meet with both your clients and your internal teams can be the most valuable part of your day in many ways. Meetings provide an opportunity to connect, plan, get creative and develop the next steps for success. But how can companies ensure they are maximizing their meeting time? This article will reveal proven techniques to help make your meetings more productive and inspiring, improving your company’s bottom line.
Prepare: Define Purpose, Pre-publish Agenda
Preparation is vital for an effective meeting to unfold. Effective planning provides a laser-like focus and ensures the most value can be derived from each gathering. By sending an agenda beforehand (and asking attendees to peruse the document prior to joining), clients and teams attending can know exactly what to expect, ensuring the meeting remains on track.
Teams can also leverage their existing digital business tools like Salesforce, Slack and Trello, with integrated applications such as Hugo. Hugo is a meeting notes platform that allows teams to stay connected and aligned with their colleagues and customers in real time, shaping the future of the way we work. It enables effective preparation for capturing, storing and sharing insights from meetings.
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Take Awesome Notes — and share them across the Enterprise
Taking, sharing and actioning notes helps you and other meeting attendees focus the meeting on results, and keeps everyone accountable. From customer conversations to internal gatherings, high-quality meeting notes reveal valuable takeaways about your business. While these insights are critical to your engineering, marketing, customer success and other teams who may not be in the room, the information is oftentimes buried in notebooks with hand-written notes, your CRM or personal note-taking software or email exchanges.
When insights from meetings rarely see the light of day and remain inaccessible to anyone who wasn’t in the room, they provide no value to your organization. Company meetings are crucial to team collaboration and communication, but countless companies fail to effectively gather and leverage those insights, resulting in important information and opportunities falling through the cracks.
With software solutions such as Hugo in place, teams can solidify conversations to reveal what was decided and why that decision was made while identifying the concepts worth remembering or sharing, driving internal alignment and improving organizational productivity. These integrations also help businesses improve team alignment and engagement gained through organized, increased information-sharing. Therefore, insights derived from meetings should be shared and made available to keep everyone connected and on the same page.
Create An Ecosystem of Productivity
As more digital business tools begin adding additional integrations, businesses will be exposed to technology that can help them to better manage productivity, improve customer relationships and boost revenues. This ecosystem of products has already begun to grow tremendously with the introduction of new technologies.
Consider being able to immediately share insights across your organization, automatically log a task and assign it to a colleague all from one centralized location. Software makes it easy for your sales, marketing, customer service, engineering and other teams to share important information with each other and work together to deliver value. Forward-thinking companies are integrating applications cross-functionally to create an ecosystem of productivity.