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How to Create the Perfect Meeting Agenda

How to Create the Perfect Meeting Agenda
Executive Summary Agendas are an important first step for a successful meeting, but far too few leaders put enough thought into the ones they create. In fact, research has found that a large percentage of agendas are simply recycled meeting to meeting.


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The Meeting Agenda

The Meeting Agenda

Normally managers put an emphasis on having a written meeting agenda prior to a meeting.

Research shows that having an agenda is of no relevance, and what's important is how the leader facilitates the discussion of the agenda. Instead of reading like a to-do list, a meeting agenda can have questions that can move forward a productive discussion.




A Question-Based Approach

By having a question-based approach as opposed to topics, participants begin to think and act differently, marching towards the true intent of the being together, with intention.

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    Specific and Challenging Questions

    Agenda questions can be molded to be like goals for the employees, to get them on their feet, energizing them and focusing their attention.

    Group goals promote group performance, and specific goals are much better than vague goals. The meeting questions, formed as goals, need to be challenging but not outlandish.

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    Identify The Right Questions

    Instead of having too many questions, the meeting leader can first float a few questions and ask for the attendees' input. This ensures collaboration and makes attendees feel listened to, making them more engaged in the meeting.

    After their input, each question is then scrutinized and ones that don't fit are dropped if necessary. The final list would then have questions that are relevant and of strategic importance.

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    Prioritizing Questions

    The questions on top of the list receive a disproportionate amount of attention and time. The key questions, which are a high priority need to be at the top.

    One can also make the attendees who own the question speak it out in the meeting themselves, demonstrating ownership and inclusion.

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    Execution of The Agenda

    Once the set of questions are finalized, the meeting leader can distribute the agenda in advance, a few days in advance. There are many approaches to execute the question-based meeting, some of them are:

    • Brainstorming.
    • Voting Apps.
    • Pairing attendees for an agenda point.
    • Role-playing.
    • Deliberation and Decision.

    A question-based approach to agendas brings focus, engagement and better performance to meetings.

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    Negative People

    Negative people want to bring you down. They rarely contribute, cannot accept you, and consistently work to hurt, belittle or suck away your motivation.

    Regardless of your accomplishme...

    Negative News

    Negative news will slowly bring you down, eventually draining your energy and leaving you unmotivated.

    Try to keep your distance from people who complain a lot and from media that promotes negative news.

    Fear Of Failure

    Many see failure as proof that our effort meant nothing. But failure is a feedback system and gives you the opportunity to fix things, reflect, and grow for the next time.

    When you fail, take a step back, look at the events that led to it, try to find the lesson in the failure and act upon it.

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    Be selective

    When you start on a project, make sure it is something you are passionate about and you want to see through.

    If you aren’t sure that this is something you really want to do, try it out on a s...

    Estimate the resources you need

    It doesn’t have to be exhaustive. Just a quick outline will help. The point is to have something that guides you.

    Do a quick plan on how much time and effort this idea will take, so you can have a bird’s eye view.

    Budget your time and energy

    Good planning of resources help you plan out your energy and expectations. 

    So plan out your time and resources accordingly and integrate them into your schedule/to-do list. Block out time in your calendar for the project. Give yourself some buffer as well, in case of contingencies.

    Must-have questions for 1:1 meetings

    1. How’s life? - Helps with building trust.
    2. What are you worried about right now?  
    3. What rumors are you hearing that you think I should know about? ...