How to Conduct Motivational Meetings That Make a Difference

How to Conduct Motivational Meetings That Make a Difference

Everyone would like to believe that they are good at holding corporate meetings. After all, as the boss or manager, it is likely something you have to do on a regular basis. But the truth is that most people hate meetings, and you might even hate running them as much as your employees hate attending them. So if you want to switch things up and find a way to make meetings more enjoyable for everyone, here’s how you can conduct motivational meetings that make a difference in your operation.

Meet When Necessary

First things first: don’t hold a meeting unless you have to. It’s a great idea to have regular meetings for ongoing projects or deliverables, but conducting a meeting just because it is penciled into your calendar is a poor use of everyone’s time. If people know that meetings are only held when there is something important to discuss, they are more likely to be engaged and will be motivated to attend to learn something new.

Everyone Should Speak

Motivational meetings are achievable only if you avoid doing all the talking. When people are shuffled into a room and expected to sit quietly for any length of time, it can get a little boring. Most people are thinking about what they are going to have for lunch, what they need to do when they get back to their desk, and the gardening they are going to do on the weekend. If you want to motivate people to be engaged in your meetings, let them do the talking. Any essential information you need to distill can come at the end of the session so that you can maintain the attention of everyone. Make sure people come with an update or piece of information to pass on so that they are ready, willing, and able to be engaged in the meeting.

If you like this article so far please share to Facebook and LinkedIn

Only Invite the Necessary People

While it might seem like you are leaving people out of the loop, inviting only the necessary people to a meeting keeps it focused, and avoids distracting others from their work. If you need to send information to the entire company, send an email. If you have specific information you need to discuss with team leaders or managers, hold a meeting. Invite only the people who need the information and not a single person more. Nothing is worse than sitting through a meeting that has nothing to do with you. And it can actually reduce productivity because people can start to feel like they aren’t needed when a meeting doesn’t pertain to them.

Stick to Your Agenda and Time Limit

One of the most important things to maintaining motivation in a meeting is to start on time. Make sure your employees know that you value their time. Show up with an agenda of items you want to about, and you might even go so far as to write down the list for all to see. Sure, it can take an extra minute or two to write down an agenda on a whiteboard, but the visualization of the meeting can help motivate people to stay engaged. At the beginning of the session ask everyone to use one or two words to describe the items they want to talk about and write them down as well. That way, everyone has a chance to add their two cents, and they can stay more engaged.

Encourage Discourse

Meetings that don’t involve discussion or critique are a challenge for meeting-goers stay engaged. If you want your employees to stay motivated during a meeting, get them involved by asking them questions, encourage them to comment on other people’s discussion items, ask questions of other people’s discussion items, and allow for candor in your meetings, so people know they are a safe place to express themselves.

Carrots and Sticks

A lot of managers will bring snacks to their meetings, but experience has shown that allowing your employees to eat during a meeting can be distracting and can cause side conversations about how delicious that chocolate chip cookie was! Rather than distract your employees during meetings, allow them a few minutes at the start of a meeting to mingle and enjoy some snacks, or save the snacking for the end of the meeting as a way to blow off some steam before returning to work. You can have the luxury of having a leisurely end of your meeting if you stick to your agenda and keep the focus on only the topics that need discussing at that time. End by setting a to-do list for those that need to deliver work back or up the line, and then enjoy a light snack together as a way to end the meeting.

Following Up

One of the most important aspects to maintaining motivation during a meeting is actually to follow up on meeting deliverables after the fact. Don’t let work fall to the wayside or don’t leave employees thinking that you don’t care about the work they did as a result of that meeting. Encourage them to share their progress at the start of the next meeting and always ask for any feedback about the previous meeting as a way to continually improve time management, priorities, and motivation.