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How to run a smart meeting

Run a smart meeting by setting a clear agenda, encouraging active participation, keeping the discussion focused, making decisions efficiently, and ensuring everyone understands the follow-up actions.

A smart meeting is a well-organized and efficient gathering of individuals that leverages technology, data, and collaborative tools to enhance productivity, improve decision-making, and streamline communication. It involves the use of smart devices, video conferencing, cloud-based platforms, and other digital solutions to automate administrative tasks, share relevant information in real-time, engage participants, and facilitate effective collaboration. A smart meeting aims to maximize the utilization of time, minimize disruptions, and ultimately drive better outcomes.

What is the purpose of a smart meeting?

Running a smart meeting as a leader serves the purpose of fostering collaboration, efficiency, and productivity among team members. By utilizing technology, setting clear objectives, and encouraging active participation, smart meetings enhance decision-making, streamline communication, and drive better outcomes. Overall, it empowers leaders to drive effective teamwork and achieve desired goals.

How to run a smart meeting: Step-By-Step

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Step 1: Set Clear Objectives

Determine the purpose of the meeting to ensure effective planning and execution. Identify whether it is meant for brainstorming innovative ideas, making crucial decisions, sharing important information, or finding solutions to complex problems and align the meeting agenda accordingly.

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Step 2: Invite Necessary Parties

It is crucial to only invite individuals who are vital to the meeting’s goal. This approach guarantees that the meeting stays on track and optimizes the productivity of every participant by efficiently utilizing their time.

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Step 3: Pre-Meeting Preparation

Sending meeting agendas ahead of time and encouraging participants to prepare ensures a focused and productive meeting. The agenda acts as a roadmap, keeping discussions on track and maximizing everyone’s time and contribution.

ZipDo, our tool, offers a solution for the seamless preparation of team meetings. It centralizes past session information, including agendas and meeting notes, making it accessible for meeting leads. This organization aids in efficient preparation and ensures that nothing important is overlooked.

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Step 4: Determine Meeting Format

When deciding on the format of a meeting, consider whether it will be conducted in-person, virtually, or a hybrid. Additionally, determine whether it will take the form of a presentation, round-table discussion, or workshop.

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Step 5: Set Time and Duration

To effectively manage productivity and prevent meeting fatigue, it is crucial to carefully plan and schedule the meeting, allocating appropriate time and setting a duration limit. This ensures that the meeting remains focused and efficient, maximizing results and avoiding unnecessary time wastage.

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Step 6: Open the Meeting

At the beginning of the meeting, it is important to restate the meeting’s purpose, agenda, and expected outcome. Additionally, make sure that everyone in attendance is introduced to promote a more inclusive and collaborative atmosphere.

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Step 7: Facilitate Discourse

Ensure that the discussion stays on track by following the agenda. Encourage equal participation from all members to avoid one person dominating the conversation, thus allowing for a collaborative and inclusive atmosphere.

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Step 8: Keep Time

It is crucial to monitor the duration dedicated to each agenda item. In cases where some points exceed the allotted time, it is necessary to promptly decide whether to transfer them to a future meeting or prolong the ongoing one.

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Step 9: Record Actions and Decisions

Designating a proficient individual to record minutes during the meeting is crucial as it allows for the documentation of significant discussions and decisions made. These concise notes will serve as a valuable point of reference for the team post-meeting.

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Step 10: Conclude the Meeting

In conclusion, this summary provides an overview of all decisions reached, tasks assigned, and outlines the upcoming steps to be taken.

Questions to ask as the leader of the meeting

1. What is the main objective of this meeting? (To clarify the purpose and focus of the meeting.)
2. What are the key challenges or obstacles we need to address? (To ensure all pertinent issues are identified and discussed.)
3. What are the specific goals we need to achieve in this meeting? (To set clear expectations and targets.)
4. Who are the key stakeholders and decision-makers involved? (To ensure that all relevant individuals are present and engaged.)
5. What are the potential risks, and how can we mitigate them? (To proactively address potential problems and minimize negative impacts.)
6. What data or information do we need to support our discussions and decisions? (To ensure that discussions and decisions are based on accurate and relevant information.)
7. How can we ensure everyone’s voices are heard and respected? (To foster inclusivity and encourage participation from all team members.)
8. Are there any alternative approaches or ideas we should consider? (To promote innovative thinking and explore different perspectives.)
9. What are the actionable steps or tasks we need to assign and prioritize? (To ensure clear follow-up actions and accountability.)
10. How can we measure the success of our meeting and its outcomes? (To evaluate the effectiveness and impact of the meeting on achieving desired results.)

As a leader, preparing a smart-meeting agenda involves setting clear objectives, identifying key discussion topics, and allocating appropriate time for each item. It is essential to include relevant materials for participants to review beforehand and create a structure that promotes engagement and decision-making. A thoughtfully planned agenda ensures meetings stay focused and productive.

How To Prepare For A Smart Meeting
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Topics that should be discussed in a smart meeting include project updates, strategic planning, problem-solving, team collaboration, performance reviews, goal setting, and future initiatives. A smart meeting ensures efficient use of time, promotes effective communication, enhances decision-making, and fosters a collaborative work environment.

See Our Smart Meeting Template
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Software tools to facilitate a smart meeting

Software helps leaders run smart meetings by offering features like agenda management, real-time collaboration, and task assignment. It enables participants to join remotely, share screens, and contribute ideas in a structured manner. Features like automatic note-taking and action item tracking ensure that discussions are documented and followed up on, leading to more productive and efficient meetings.

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Conclusion

In conclusion, running a smart meeting is crucial for the success of your business. By following the strategies and tips mentioned in this blog post, you can transform your meetings into productive and efficient sessions. Remember to set clear objectives, prepare in advance, keep the meeting focused, encourage active participation, and follow up with actionable steps. Incorporating technology and implementing innovative meeting techniques can also enhance the overall meeting experience. By adopting these practices, you will not only save time and resources but also foster a culture of productivity and collaboration within your organization. So, start implementing these smart meeting strategies today and watch your business meetings become more effective and impactful.

Jannik Lindner

I'm Jannik and I write on MeetingFever about the experiences from my career as a founder and team lead.

If you have any questions, please contact me via LinkedIn.

Popular Questions

What exactly is a 'Smart Meeting'?

A smart meeting involves using modern technology, digital tools, and innovative strategies to make meetings more efficient, productive, and collaborative. It is designed to reduce wasted time and enhance decision-making processes.

How can a 'Smart Meeting' improve productivity?

Smart meetings can streamline workflows by reducing meeting times, fostering better collaboration, enabling real-time feedback, and eliminating technology problems that can bring a meeting to a standstill. Moreover, they can save participants from geographical constraints through video conferencing and online collaboration tools.

Which technologies are typically used in a 'Smart Meeting'?

Some common technologies used in smart meetings include video conferencing platforms (like Zoom or Microsoft Teams), collaboration tools (like Slack or Google Workspace), project management apps (like Asana or Trello), and smart displays or interactive whiteboards for real-time brainstorming and strategy mapping.

What are some best practices for conducting a 'Smart Meeting'?

Clear objectives should be defined for every meeting and an agenda should be distributed beforehand. The right technologies and tools should be chosen based on the meeting’s needs and all participants should be trained to use them. It’s also crucial to maintain active participation from attendees, draw actionable conclusions from each session, and follow up on tasks assigned during the meeting.

How can 'Smart Meetings' benefit remote teams?

Smart meetings enable remote teams to collaborate as if they are in the same room by facilitating face-to-face communication and real-time collaboration, albeit digitally. These digital tools can help bridge geographical gaps, maintain effective communication, and allow comprehensive project management. It eventually results in stronger team collaboration and productivity.

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