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Ten reasons why meetings fail

May 28, 2009

Meetings can take up a large portion of anyone’s working day and for many of us, demands on time in the office are already high. So in an ideal world every meeting should count, with specific objectives and results making the time invested worthwhile. 

Allowing conflict to get out of control = chaos

Allowing conflict to get out of control = chaos

All too often though, meetings – even during and afterwards – are perceived as a waste of time by those invited. This can usually be attributed to a lack of understanding about what the meeting was for. To avoid the sense that it was all worthless, here is a list of ten reasons why meetings can fail for you to use as a checklist when planning your next meeting:

1.      No agenda = no purpose
2.      No advance communication = surprising behaviours/responses
3.      Not encouraging participation = no interaction
4.      No time management = cost to organisation – time is money
5.      Allowing conflict to get out of control = chaos
6.      Not reaching consensus = waste of time and company resources
7.      Allowing sub meetings = no focus or direction
8.      Not controlling difficult behaviour = everyone becoming difficult
9.      Not summarising actions = misunderstanding of next steps
10.  Not motivational = attendees leave feeling flat and despondent

This list is based on an article written by Nuggets of Learning and Development.

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