MEETINGS & Don’t End a Meeting Without Doing These 3 Things

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: As a church consultant, I have attended and analyzed hundreds of church board meeting from various denominations and sizes of congregations. And these meetings may be a greater waste of time than any other activity in which church leaders engage. A solution is to have outcomes and to meet/state them before the end of the meeting. Here are three helpful ways to undertake this.

Don’t End a Meeting Without Doing These 3 Things

by Bob Frisch and Cary Greene, Harvard Business Review, APRIL 26, 2016.

Confirm key decisions and next steps. Recap what was decided in the meeting, who is accountable for following through, when implementation will occur, and how it will be communicated. You want every attendee to leave the meeting with the same understanding of what was agreed, so there’s little chance of anyone reopening the issues later…

Develop communication points. If a colleague not at the meeting asks an attendee “What happened?” he or she should know what to say. So before you wrap up, put the question to the group. “What are the most important things we accomplished in our time here together?” As the group responds, capture the key points on a flip chart or whiteboard and briefly summarize them. Once you have alignment on what should be communicated to others ask everyone if there are any parts of the discussion that they wouldn’t want to be shared…

Gather session feedback. Especially if your group will meet regularly, ask attendees for feedback on the session while it’s fresh in their minds. This is an oft-missed opportunity to learn both what people liked and what they would change. Instead of asking a broad question like “What feedback do you have?”, which often yields equally vague and unhelpful responses, break the discussion into what we call “roses” (positives) and “thorns” (negatives). Start with the latter. Tell attendees to think about everything they have received or done related to the meeting from the time they were invited to the review, including any prereads, prework and aspects of the meeting itself, such as location, time quality of the coffee, etc. Then ask, “What could be improved?..

Read more at … https://hbr.org/2016/04/dont-end-a-meeting-without-doing-these-3-things