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How to Manage a Productive Staff Meeting

Do you feel like your staff meetings are productive? Are they effective in achieving the goals you set for them? If not, it may be time to rethink how you run them.

Having a productive staff meeting is crucial to many organizations so that they do not waste valuable time in meetings. Productivity is key for effective teamwork and to manage a high performing team. In this article we highlight how to manage a productive staff meeting, the tools that help and meeting etiquette.

According to a recent study by Atlassian, meetings were the seconds largest time wasters behind emails. According to the article, 91% daydreamed during meetings, 96% missed meetings and 39% actually slept during a meeting at some point.

Having productive meetings encourages everyone on your team to stay engaged and make use of their time. It also shortens your meetings and provides more focus. So let’s dig right in.

What is required to Manage a Productive Staff Meeting?

Here is what you can do to increase your meeting productivity and have better staff meetings:

Have a Meeting Agenda

Having a meeting agenda is crucial if you are looking to have productive meetings. Many leaders skip the meeting agenda siting “lack of time”. In fact having a meeting agenda has been proven to save you time during your meetings.

To have an effective meeting agenda make sure you choose topics that are relevant to your team and try to seek input from your team members. More importantly, ensure everyone on the team gets the agenda in advance.

If you need help choosing a meeting agenda then check out these meeting agenda templates you can choose from. You don’t need to come up with a new one, you can use and customize whats already out there.

Have a Meeting Objective

Add a meeting objective to your meeting agenda. The meeting objective provides clarity on the meeting. It also provides more detail to everyone on your team what the meeting is about. Ensure that the meeting objective is specific to the agenda on hand. A great meeting objective is short and concise.

End with Decisions & Action Items

End your meeting with decisions and action items that are clear to team members. Any additional work required must be clearly laid out with who is responsible for it and when the due date to deliver the action item will be.

The action to be taken must be clearly defined and specific to the individual carrying it out. Here is a great example of an action item: John is to complete the marketing budget for next quarter by the 10th of November and send it to the marketing manager Lisa.

Have the Right Tools

Having the right tools to manage a productive staff meeting is crucial. If you have a hybrid team or a remote team then it is essential that you properly equip your meeting room or office with the right tools.

If you are having a meeting via video then ensure you have a great microphone and camera so that people can hear you and see you properly. You have many tools like Zoom, Google Meet, Microsoft teams that all provide you with a great platform to facilitate your meetings.

There are also many other tools out there that facilitate your meetings. If you are looking to keep a copy of your meeting audio then there are many transcription tools that do a great job to capture the conversation.  

You can also use a meeting management software like to help build your meeting agenda and send it out to everyone on your team. A good meeting management software can also help automate follow up and serve as a record to keep your minutes of meetings.

Meeting Etiquette

Start and End on Time

Start your meetings on time. That provides a clear message to the late comers that they will miss out on the first part of the meeting if they are late. Likewise end your meeting on time to help put pressure on everyone to go through the agenda as efficiently as possible and avoid side conversations.

Avoid Multitasking and Side Conversations

Avoid multitasking and side conversations as those can be perceived as rude and can waste valuable time. Focus instead on the meeting agenda and on the meeting taking place. This also increases the productivity of the meeting.

Do Not Eat During the Meeting

Do not eat during the meeting as that can slow the meeting down. It can also be a distraction to everyone in the meeting and can sometimes be perceived as rude.

How to Handle Time Wasters

If you find yourself in a situation where a team member is wasting time and derailing the meeting, then a great approach is to let them know politely that their input is highly valuable and that this topic will be added to the “parking lot” of topics to discussed and worked on in future meetings.

Proceed with the meeting agenda and remember to add that to future topics and address it in another meeting so that team members know that the parking lot is a serious set of issues to be addressed.

Do you need a boost to your team productivity? Schedule your free Discovery Call to see how Simply Placed can help.  Here’s to your organized and healthy life!

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