Effective Team Meetings

Team meetings provide an opportunity for team members to get together to plan, communicate essential information, discuss issues, and make decisions. In order to have effective team meetings, these guidelines should be followed:

  1. Identify the purpose of the meeting. Is a meeting the best way to handle the need?
  2. Determine who should attend the meeting. Are all the necessary individuals included? Are they all needed?
  3. Develop a logically ordered agenda and allocate time considering urgency and importance. Clearly state the discussion items for attendees to understand.
  4. Send out a meeting notice and agenda with purpose, place, time and any required preparation.
  5. Start the meeting on time to maintain effective meeting discipline. Late arrivals must catch up on their own. Cancel the meeting if “must” members are absent.
  6. Insure someone is responsible for taking meeting minutes. Standardize the format.
  7. State the objectives of the meeting. Review the agenda items and the expected actions.
  8. Follow the agenda. Keep the meeting from getting off track.
  9. Clarify the issues. Use a disciplined process to gather the facts and come to a decision. Strive for consensus with key decisions. Summarize important points.
  10. Manage the time. Assign a timekeeper to assist with this if needed.
  11. Make the action items and their responsibility explicit.
  12. Distribute meeting minutes within one day of the meeting.