Saturday, 21 January 2017

Chit Chat: General Office Etiquette – Part 4 – Trouble Free Meetings

Meetings are very effective for businesses as they can be used as a tool to get things done and build rapport with the company. However, poorly managed meetings can simply be a waste of everyone’s time. Here are a few tips on how to create trouble-free, effective meetings in the workplace.
  • Invitations – send out invitations to the meeting to all employees using a computerized system
  • Sensible scheduling – take into consideration the time of day and how inconvenient these times may be for the employees
  • Give employees plenty of notice so they’re able to plan ahead and get organised
  • Send out the meeting agenda or give an idea of the topics that will be covered in the meeting in advance
  • Allow for segmentation of the meeting – allow people to leave once their area of concern has been covered
  • Let employees know if attendance is compulsory and check the replies

Seating Politics

It is tradition for the leader of the meeting to take the head of the table. However, if you have important guests the senior representative of that company is given the center seat at the table, facing the door with the staff sat alongside. The host company sits opposite.

Meeting Manners
  1. Be punctual
  2. Inform the leader if you’re running late
  3. Enter quietly if you arrive late and don’t interrupt
  4. Don’t whisper to your neighbours
  5. Be quiet and courteous
  6. Turn off mobile phones or inform the leader that you’re awaiting an important call if applicable
  7. Eat before the meeting to avoid embarrassing rumblings
  8. Discuss don’t argue
  9. Stick to the agenda
  10. Only ask necessary questions
  11. Don’t point fingers

Video Conferences

Video conferences are more common these days but it’s still important to follow etiquette rules:
  1. Dress formally for the meeting
  2. Make eye contact but don’t sit too close to the screen
  3. Only exit the room if absolutely necessary
  4. Use nameplates for all attendees
  5. Have a contingency plan in case of technical issues
  6. Speak loud and clear but don’t shout
  7. Use names when directing questions
  8. Don’t speak over people
  9. Avoid rustling papers and keep background noise to a minimum
  10. Turn off your phone
  11. Organizers should still provide an agenda, inform attendees of who will be present and introduce all attendees
  12. Start and end on time

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