Karen Appold is a medical writer in Pennsylvania.
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Explore this issueNovember 2015
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Mixing Up Meetings: Deviate from the mundane
One advantage to mixing up staff meetings—from changing the format to adding ice breakers or other activities—is you keep employees on their toes. “They pay attention because they don’t know what will happen next,” says Tim Hird, executive director, Robert Half Management Resources, San Ramon, Calif.
To take a break from mundane meetings, Diane Amundson, CSP, owner, Diane Amundson & Associates, Winona, Minn., suggests “walking meetings.” While these work best one on one, small groups find them helpful as well. “Use them for brainstorming, troubleshooting and just getting to know each other better. Walking together can be a way to increase productivity when many staff members may want to kick back,” she says. In bad weather, try walking at a mall or workout facility.
Mr. Hird is also a proponent of outside meetings. “The sunshine and fresh air invigorate and put people in a refreshed state of mind,” he says.
If you have only a few updates for a group, consider asking everyone to stand. “Attendees won’t sidetrack the conversation because they won’t want to stand longer than necessary,” Mr. Hird says.
Why Meetings Fall Short
More than 400 workers were asked: “Which of the following mistakes do meeting leaders commonly make?” Here’s what they said:
Courtesy of Robert Half Management Resources
In a Robert Half Management Resources survey, more than 400 workers were asked: “In general, what percentage of the time you spend in meetings is wasted?” The mean answer was 25%.