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Tips For Conducting A Business Management Meeting

Jan 3, 2008
The basic phases of successful management are well known to be planning, organizing, directing coordinating and controlling. In addition to personal contact with subordinate managers, the senior manager often needs to convene business meetings to insure that these phases of successful management are being fulfilled. The failure to follow these basic tenets of good management have often doomed a project to failure or in the worst case have resulted in the separation of the manager from employment. A manager may have several projects in various phases of the management cycle or perhaps only one project in a particular phase.

In any case the business meeting is a critically important tool for successful management, yet business meetings have a way of being strung out and time consuming affairs that often lead nowhere, accomplish nothing and steal productive time from those in attendance. It is incumbent on the leader of the business meeting to properly prepare an agenda and determine if the topics to be discussed are simply for the purpose of acquiring information, require a decision or are to assign responsibilities for action. It is also important to place a time limit on the discussions in the meeting otherwise the purpose of the meeting can become confusing or result in editorializing by participants that serves no useful purpose. Keeping the meeting on course and within time limits may require a manager to assert their authority for the benefit of all.

The use of visual aids to reinforce information received or disseminated greatly enhances the objectives and is a powerful tool that can be used in the meeting. Power point presentations, graphs or a simple charts that highlight key points are important for success and serve to reinforce the objectives of the meeting. It is also important to keep notes of important points decided during the course of the meeting and then distribute them to attendees as soon as possible after the meeting to insure that everyone understands their individual responsibilities and comprehends the impact of any decisions.

Often a business meeting is convened to update a manager on the status of a particular project. The perceptive manager thanks participants for their information and insures that deadlines and specific responsibilities where appropriate are assigned and understood. It is particularly important at the end of the meeting for the convening manager to review what has been accomplished by reminding participants of their specific responsibilities as well as any deadlines that have been assigned. This is important even if notes have been kept and the intention is to provide participants with a complete record of the important aspects of the meeting. Armed with this information, the successful business manager is better prepared to lead.
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