You've determined to use meetings as a chance to make an impact, you've invited the right people, you've communicated the agenda, you've got your headspace right, you've started on time, and you managed the three characters who can derail your meeting.
But one of the most important things that impacts your meeting performance in a meeting is how you follow up after the meeting.
Following up effectively after a meeting is the 'extra mile' step that will take your meetings from good to great.
Here's how it works:
Assign someone to take notes during the meeting. Don't take this responsibility on yourself as you'll need to focus your attention on facilitating the meeting, not capturing its outcomes. Tell your colleague to pay special attention to deliverables or outcomes, who they're assigned to, and when they're due. Use the formula: X (team member) does Y (specific task) by Z (particular date), "who does what by when?"
When the meeting is over, communicate the meeting notes out to the team. Email, Slack or Google Docs are a good place to start. If the documents were handwritten, or you used a whiteboard to capture content, simply take a picture with your phone, and send that as the meeting notes. Don't waste time retyping it. The important thing here is clear and transparent communication that drives accountability and next steps.
Highlight the deliverables in a "Bottom Line Up Front" format at the top of your communication to your team. Then include following up on those into your agenda for the upcoming meeting.
These three simple steps will take your meetings from good to great.
But what if your meetings don't routinely generate new work assignments or require anything to be followed up on? Then it might be time to reevaluate the necessity of the meeting.