Whereas a bad meeting drags on, has poorly engaged participants - and often the wrong ones - and gets nothing done. There are plenty of questions at such a meeting but few answers. No-one talks in turn and a few people wonder what they are there for. It all gets pushed back to the next meeting, and likely as not no-one took any minutes so you repeat the exercise next time.
Worst of all both meetings cost money as well as time. So how do you fix this? It seems easy enough that you:
- plan ahead, investigate the issues and lay them down in a clear way
- you appoint a chair (if it's not you)
- and make sure beforehand that you have invited the right people: people who know what the topics are and have a stake in the outcomes
- you set time limits and stick by them
- you also need to control the meeting fairly, make sure anyone with a contribution gets a go and that the group considers all sides
- you make sure someone takes minutes and that actions are clearly owned and tracked to completion.