Meeting Success

Here are eight keys for planning a meeting to achieve the desired outcome:

1. Define the objective – Visualize the end result in graphic detail right down to the emotions. This will help you to clarify the big picture and your role in it.

2. Beware of negative motives that you may unconsciously have – However once you visualize your desired outcome right down to its bare essentials, it becomes easy to release the stronghold of negative emotions.

3. Ensure adequate time and resources for preparation – Distribute the meeting memo and share the agenda a few days in advance to give adequate time for preparation. 

4. Visualize the mutually beneficial outcome for all parties – Clarify the outcome where all parties come back satisfied or at least with a certain measure of acceptable gain.

5. Stick to the schedule and agenda – Respect everyone’s time and presence. Start the meeting on time and end it on time (or even early if possible).

6. Decide on your behavior and presentation to achieve a mutually beneficial outcome – Ensure your words and your body language supports your intentions and desired outcome. Step away from a boxed-in ‘either-or approach’ to evaluating several new chains of thoughts and ideas.

7. Do not allow any one person to dominate the meeting – In case anyone person continues to hog the attention or derail the topic, firmly and politely request them to stick to the time.

8. Ideally, try to end the meeting on a positive note. Whether it’s commending someone on their contribution or highlighting group effort at a previous task, a positive ending always wraps up an activity with everyone feeling motivated to carry on the next steps with enthusiasm and confidence.

9. Decide on the next steps – Close the meeting with a clear outline of the next steps as well as what kind of a review mechanism will be adopted. Who will do the review, when, and how? If any decisions were made at the meeting, the meeting planner should clearly spell out the role of each participant and the scope of work along with deliverables.

Finally, the key to a successful interaction or exchange, or any business for that matter is rooted in a quote by late Zig Ziglar: “You will get all you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want.”

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