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Effective Ways To Run A Meeting

Throughout the world, right at this minute, there are probably literally thousands of meeting being held in workplaces. Some will be boring, some will be interesting, some useful, some angry, some downright pointless. If you hold meetings for your staff, they should be effective.

What does that mean?

Meetings should make good use of time. They can drag on and on, but does that mean that they are a good meeting? A short meeting standing making a cup of coffee can sometimes result in more positive ideas than three hours of meetings with nothing sorted out.

Aim for an outcome

Effective meetings should be creative and lead to great ideas. Meetings should produce something, and an important part of this is that meetings should increase creativity. Staff can bounce ideas off each other, talk, think. This can increase creativity and should be encouraged.

Neil holds regular monthly meetings with his staff where he tells them his ideas and what they should do. If other staff suggest ideas, he immediately puts them down. The staff sit and listen, bored and disinterested. They do what they are told. Many of the staff in that meeting have great, creative ideas that would help Neil’s business, but he never listens to them.  Make good use of your staff and their ideas. They may have brilliant ideas that could help you and your business in a small way or even transform it. Also, consider that the staff sitting there with their brilliant ideas not listened to, may eventually leave and start up as an innovative and creative competitor.


Meetings  should be informative. A sales meetings where sales figures are discussed can help staff to see what they need to achieve. Or a meeting to discuss regulations such as GDPR or give staff training can help. Meetings might discuss new products, new ideas, the season's product range, and so on. An effective meeting will provide staff with a lot of useful information.

Meetings should be cost effective

A meeting should increase income/productivity/sales/ideas over and above the actual cost of holding the meeting.

Sandra holds a weekly sales meeting to discuss how to improve sales of her gift and craft products in her shops and online. She closes all of her shops early on a Wednesday and all staff travel to their head office for a two hour meeting.

After a month, sales from the new ideas discussed reach £1000 extra a week. However, Sandra has closed down her 5 shops, two hours early, so lost potential sales. Before doing the meetings, she would usually earn £300 income across all shop for those 2 hours. She is also paying staff for the 2 hours in the meeting and travel costs, plus paying them for the time travelling. For 10 staff, this works out as £200 for their wages, plus £50 travel expenses. In all, the meeting costs £550, but she makes £1000 a week, so actually she is only making an extra £450 a week by having the meetings.

So when holding meetings, it is important to consider costs involved and whether that is cost-effective. Could Sandra hold online meetings via Skype and so on? Are there other alternatives? Do they have to be weekly? Can some news be passed on via email or newsletter?

Have purpose

All meetings should have purpose –

  • To make decisions
  • Inform staff
  • Educate staff
  • Discuss new ways to sell products
  • Review how things are going

At the end of the meeting, there should be something produced – ideas, thoughts, actions for people to do after the meeting, new strategies to use on social media and so on. A meeting that ends with no new ideas, strategies or plans is probably not a very useful one. Effective meetings are those that are informative, useful, creative, positive and encouraging to everyone involved. Take time to think about whether the meetings you hold are these things or are you wasting your own time and the time of the people you are meeting with.

Could their time be put to better use?

Good staff are those that thing outside the box, coming up with new ideas, so listen to them.

Affiliate with ACS Distance Education

If you are looking for new ideas in your business, new ways to expand and be more creative in the goods and services you offer, why not consider affiliating with another creative, growing, productive and efficient business – ACS Distance Education? We were established in 1979, when our Principal started with one course. We now have over 700 courses and an excellent team of writers.

If you think this might be of interest to you, why not get in touch with our experienced affiliate managers –

Kate Gibson (based in Australia) can be contacted at or +61 (0)7 5562 1088
Jade Sciascia (based in the UK) can be contacted at or +44 (0)1384 442752

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