An Underrated Employee Holiday Gift

An Underrated Employee Holiday Gift

As we’re in the thick of the gift-giving season, I wanted to share an employee gift idea that is highly underrated and often overlooked. And one you probably won’t see on any holiday gift guides for the workplace.

I’m talking about the gift of effective meetings.

I get it, this isn’t your typical employee gift that can be neatly displayed on a desk; but it’s a gift that lasts all year round and shows your employees how much you value them and their time.

There’s no shortage of feelings towards meetings. You’re likely familiar with many of the following thoughts surrounding meetings:

  • The meeting marathon
  • The meeting that could have been an email
  • The meeting where nothing new was discussed
  • The meeting where you ended up more confused 

I’ll be the first to say that meetings are very important . . . but only if done effectively. 

Communication is one of the most important foundational pillars to a healthy organization, so being able to hold effective meetings is important for the flow of communication and keeping people on the same page and progressing forward. 

But when meetings are run ineffectively, they decrease productivity, employee morale, and can create more confusion than confidence.

So as a manager or leader in your company, I ask you to consider the gift of effective meetings for your employees beginning now and throughout the New Year!

To give this gift, follow these 5 simple steps:

  1. Identify the Purpose

Before even thinking about scheduling a meeting, identify the purpose. What outcome do you want? Is this purely informational? Is there a specific decision that needs to be made? Is this a one-time meeting or does it need to be recurring for a long-term project?

  1. Identify the People

Once you’ve identified the purpose, identify the people who need to be a part of this meeting based on that purpose. This can be difficult, as oftentimes many people want to join meetings, but it’s more important to identify the essential individuals to fulfill the purpose. Be intentional with who you identify as necessary to the meeting.

  1. Identify the Agenda (and Send Invites)

Preparation is the key to effective meetings. Prepare an agenda with the key topics and time allotted. Identify and assign who will be speaking on each item. Send out to the identified invitees 24-48 hours in advance of the meeting. This will allow participants to be prepared and avoid surprises and distractions.

As the leader of this meeting, you will then take this agenda and expand it for yourself, identifying the 1-2 key notes for each topic. These should be on the purpose of that topic and the outcome you want to achieve.

  1. Identify Roles

Roles during the meeting not only increases engagement, but also assures respect for both time and content. There are three main roles that should always be fulfilled:

  • Meeting Facilitator/Organizer: This is who leads the meeting.
  • Time Keeper: This is who makes sure to stay on track and respect the time allotted for the meeting.
  • Note Taker: This is who takes notes during the meeting of follow-up action items and decisions made.
  1. Identify Effectiveness

It will take time to get your meetings to a point of effectiveness. It’s a healthy habit to reflect on the meetings to assure they are effective or headed in that direction. Especially if you have recurring meetings. Review if the purpose is on track, the right people are still in the meetings, and if the schedule or frequency is still good. 

While it may seem like more work than you’re doing now for meetings, I encourage you to reflect on the current effectiveness of your meetings as well as the employee engagement within those meetings. Are you getting the results you want? Do you have to schedule more meetings about the same topic? Effective meetings are mostly in the preparation and with intentional thinking and planning, your meetings will become easier, more effective, and more engaging in no time!

To learn more about workplace health and effective prescriptions, contact Danielle and schedule a 15-minute free workplace diagnosis, click here!