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MAKE MEETINGS MORE EFFECTIVE –THE USE OF AN OUTCOME AGENDA

In today’s world of work and non-work activities the need for meetings is inevitable. Having to work in multidisciplinary teams to solve problems or simply in teams/groups is a necessity. Meetings can be a waste of precious time if they are not focused and organized. Too many meetings lack a clear mission and as well an idea of what outcomes are being aimed at. Because they are ill defined people arrive at a meeting unprepared to discuss and contribute to the results that are required.

In order to make a meeting an effective one it is necessary not only to have an agenda but an agenda which is focused on outcomes. Simply put, what is it that we wish to achieve as a result of this meeting. Agendas must therefore be written in a different fashion. Rather than topics to be discussed, the Agenda must be written to reflect the outcomes required. As a result of this meeting the following outcomes will be determined. This is far different from an Agenda which describes or rather lists what topics are to be covered.

An Agenda which focuses on outcomes will give people the opportunity to choose whether to attend or not to attend and will also excite them tom attend if they know how their contribution is going to impact upon the outcome which has been listed. Such an approach also aids in more focused individual preparation and succinct contributions at the meeting thus managing meeting time more efficiently. Beyond this the meeting will be more strategic. This approach gives more value to people involved and as a result there is not only greater motivation to participate and contribute but more attachment to ensuring that the results are achieved.

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