Monday, May 13, 2013

How to run a meeting

I must sheepishly admit that NC State's MBA program does not cover the important subject of how to run a meeting.  Now I do not have to worry, because I can point students to an excellent article on the subject by Donald Rumsfeld in last weekend's WSJ.  Here is a quick summary of the key issues he raises:
  1. Ask whether you really need to have the meeting.  If it is purely informational, why not use an email or memo?
  2. Think hard about who really needs to attend.  
  3. Start and end on time.  
  4. Do everything in your power to make sure all views get articulated.
  5. If people are not prepared, end the meeting and reconvene later.
  6. If everyone agrees that an idea is brilliant, encourage questions and concerns.  
  7. At the end, be sure to summarize key points and identify action items.  
He also says leaders should have stand-up desks so that walk-ins do not linger.  Not sure I buy that one.  

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