Providing Ready-To-Use Leadership Tools. Sign-up for Free Tools
Planning business meeting agendas is not typically at
the top of every business leader's list of “can’t wait to-do’s”. However, it's important to avoid
the natural tendency to simply show up and "wing-it". You owe it to your team to make good use of everyone's time.
Despite the tedious nature of "planning ahead" to ensure a highly productive business meeting, the benefits of investing time up front, will definitely pay off and it far outweighs the costs of not making the effort.
Planning business meeting agendas well in advance ensures a clearly defined objectives of the meeting. A good leader will, in effect, pre-determine the outcome of the meeting through proper planning.
For example, let's say you want the outcome of your Monday morning meeting to be that all team members will complete at least 5 outbound in-person sales calls by the end of the week, equivalent to one sales call per day.
With your outcome clearly defined, you can quickly plan an agenda that helps team members determine what they need to do successfully achieve the goal. The agenda may include discussion around how they may need to rearrange their schedule to free up time for calling. You might want to allow time in the agenda to make a list of any barriers or obstacles that could get in the way of meeting the goal and then work as a team to provide answers on how to overcome each objective.
“Plans are of little importance, but planning is essential.”
- Winston Churchill
While it's true that it does require some extra time to thoughtfully plan a meeting, the benefits to your team and to the business can be enormous. To ensure consistency, schedule time on your calendar for meeting planning. The time required for planning will lessen over time once you get into the habit of doing it.
Next, we'll discuss the many benefits of planning business meeting agendas, and how your efforts will earn you added credibility as a leader.
The many benefits of effectively planning business meeting activities include:
- Alan Lakein, author
In addition to the above benefits to planning business meeting agendas, leaders who properly plan ahead also provide team members with outstanding opportunities to:
So it's important to think through each section of your agenda to ensure you are making the best use of everyone's time. When you respect everyone's time by making certain each meeting provides value to the attendees, your team will look forward to your meetings.
There are many free business meeting agenda templates, which are available on the Internet. A quick Google search of the keyword 'free meeting agenda template' will provide you with many solid choices. Microsoft Office also provides a library of Meeting Agenda Templates.
We encourage you to take time to identify your most important, high-leverage, activities that your team needs to be managed on. Make these items "standard" agenda topics, and build your business meeting around these topics for enhanced focus and improved performance.