If you’re preparing a meeting ahead of time, make sure that all bases are covered so that everything goes well. But there’s a lot more to do in preparation for the meeting than just preparing your slides and talking points. There’s a lot to think about, from developing a clear framework to having your staff prepared and ready. Let us guide you through the meeting preparation process that we use at Slide and share some of the best practices that have been game-changers for us at blonde escorts.
- Determine your purpose and goals:
First, determine the goal of the meeting, or the ‘Why’ behind it. Why are you getting together? Is it for brainstorming? Is it to hold a meeting or to prepare the following steps? Setting one clear goal will make creating an agenda for your meeting much easier.
Second, state the main purpose of the gathering, or the ‘What’. What should the conference produce? What is the most important deliverable? Establish a measurable meeting result and stick to it. If the meeting’s purpose is to decide X, don’t quit without seeing it through.
These will be your guideposts for setting the proper expectations and steering the meeting in the right way.
- Create and distribute an agenda:
Now that you’ve determined the objectives and goals of your meeting, it’s time to establish a watertight agenda.
A meeting agenda is a list of all the actions and topics to be covered during a meeting to achieve the meeting’s goal(s). In a nutshell, a framework for your meeting.
While there is no one-size-fits-all meeting agenda template, there are some best practices to consider when creating an agenda for a) recurrent meetings and b) one-time/first-time meetings.
Meetings that occur regularly:
It’s easy to dismiss the necessity for an agenda while holding frequent meetings, such as team syncs. What is there to create when your coworkers already know the format? There are still things to think about.
The crucial word here is “simplicity.” A basic agenda may go a long way toward keeping your meeting together like a skeleton. All you need is a list of action items to go over.
Make a list of the important points you wish to cover during the meeting. You may also assign owners to each point to lead the conversation.
- Meetings held only once or for the first time
- When it comes to new meetings for which you do not already have a structure, you must delve deeper. In these cases, you must create the whole meeting agenda from scratch.
- Alignment is the essential term here. Given that your team members are unfamiliar with the format, it is critical to:
- Communicate the meeting’s objective, expectations, and goals.
- Explain the structure and length.
- Explain what has to be prepared and what each member’s obligations are.
- Before the meeting, crowdsource any queries or discussion points.
If there will be numerous presenters at the meeting, coordinate with them ahead of time. Set a time limit for each portion of the meeting. Please be as descriptive as possible.
- Distribute meeting invitations:
Send meeting invitations at least two weeks in advance so that your colleagues have ample time to fit them into their calendars.
Include all pertinent information in the meeting invite description. Share the meeting objectives and agenda (whether you’ve previously disclosed it or intend to do so later – make it available in the invite as well).
If you’re holding the meeting online or in a hybrid setting, offer a link to the video conference call so that no one misses it and can quickly access it through their calendars.
- Collect questions and ideas from your team:
Gathering input from team members before the meeting works well with some meeting formats. For example, if you’re having a brainstorming session or a planning meeting, start collecting your team members’ ideas beforehand. Attach a link to Slide to the meeting agenda or meeting invite and ask your colleagues to type their ideas into the app. This gives your colleagues a safe space for submission.
- Make available supporting materials:
If you want your meeting attendees to examine information before the meeting, or if you want your staff to prepare something, convey it well in advance. You may, for example, attach it to your meeting invitation or share it via your internal communications channel. It’s useful for having everyone on the same page and comfortable with the next topic. However, it’s a good idea to set expectations and distinguish between what’s essential and what’s great to have. Perhaps not everyone needs to read through a presentation with 50 slides. It’s sometimes enough to grasp the sense of what will be covered.
- Get your slides ready:
You’ve probably practiced getting the slide deck ready, but here are a few pointers to make your life a bit simpler.
- Make your slides as simple as possible. Keep it simple: one idea/number/sentence per slide. People do not like to read long passages of text on slides. It’s also more visually pleasing.
- Use the ‘rule of three’ method: three bullet points, three columns, and so on. People can process it more easily.
- Reduce the number of slides as well. Spend the meeting time on a productive conversation rather than an 80-slide presentation.
- Use graphics like photos, graphs, tables, and so forth.
The caliber of your meeting preparation may make or break your event. It is impossible to over-prepare. However, failing to prepare puts you at risk. With the advice we’ve provided above, you’ll be one step closer to a successful encounter. We wish you the best of luck. In the meantime, you may test Slide for free. Begin by incorporating one or two polls into your meeting presentation to keep your team members interested. More can easily be added later.