1. Objectives

Set your objectives before the meeting. Before even planning the agenda for the meeting consider what you want to achieve during it – what you want to have achieved by the end of the meeting. This will depend on the focus of the meeting in the first place but by simply writing these down you will find that your meetings will be much more productive and it will help you plan the meeting.

  1. Agenda

Ensure that you provide all participants with an agenda before the meeting starts. Your agenda  should include a brief description of the meetings objectives (set in step one), a list of all the topics to be covered and a list stating who will address each topic and how long you have set for each agenda item. Other key items on the agenda should be the time, date and location of the meeting and any background information that the participants may need to know to make an informed decision.

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  1. Assign Action Items

One of the biggest mistakes that committees make is finishing a discussion item without deciding how to act on it. Statements such as We should really…, that’s a topic for a different meeting…, or I wonder if we could… are examples of comments that should trigger action items to get a task done, hold another meeting or further examine a particular idea.