Inevitably in the world of business there will come a time that you either have to attend or help prepare a business meeting for yourself, your bosses, your team, colleagues and more. Sometimes you may be called on to prepare meetings that you won’t be involved in, and sometimes you will have to attend as well. Whatever the meeting, for whatever reason and whoever it’s for, here are five tips for having the perfect business meeting.
The Location And Time
Number one consideration when it comes to preparing business meetings of any kind is thinking about where to host it and when. Of course you wouldn’t host a business meeting at the weekend or even before a long weekend necessarily, but after weekends is sometimes a good idea. Generally people seem more alert on Tuesdays or Wednesdays, following the Monday doldrums they get into the groove and are more likely to be in the jive of the week by Wednesday and are more likely to participate and get the most out of a meeting then. When it comes to location, using the most convenient place for all members of the team is always the best plan – whether it’s in your office or a local hotel conference room etc will be determined by the amount of attendees. In some cases consider a video conference to help save money, gas and more.
Presenting at the meeting? Get your stuff together beforehand in order to prepare and be on your best form. Prepping might include making sure all the things you and others will need are available such as projectors, whiteboards, pads of paper, writing tools and more. You don’t want to get to the meeting to find out that you or someone else needs something that has been borrowed out from the company’s repository of meeting materials and you’re out of luck!
Food – Even For The Finicky
One of the things that can make or break a business meeting is the food. Don’t serve anything too heavy and be sure to provide options for vegetarians and even vegans as both lifestyles are becoming more and more common in today’s world. Things like egg sandwiches, vegetables with hummus and various picky bits will help people maintain their sugar levels and therefore their focus but not put them to sleep after lunch. Consider platters of cut up fruit as well, something that’s always popular.
Consider scheduling speakers, presentations, breaks and lunch in advance so everyone knows what’s happening and nothing is left as a surprise. This can help alleviate worry in some speakers or presenters and will help things flow well, keeping everyone on track. Schedules mean that everyone can be sure of specific start and end times and work their other tasks and responsibilities around the meeting accordingly.
It’s The Little Things
When it comes to the little things, they can go a long way. Consider providing small bottles of water for attendees, pads of paper for notes and pre-prepared packages of talking points, schedules and the like. This can help provide quick reference points to all meeting attendees and help them follow along to get the most out of any meeting.
So whether you’re planning a meeting for yourself and your colleagues or you’re doing it for others, these tips should help you plan a great meeting with lots of potential for great conversation, learning in an environment that provides a lot of value. Good luck!