Any business requires good communication, collaboration, and coordination among its teams and other stakeholders. The most reliable way to accomplish this is by bringing the concerned parties together in business meetings.
According to reliable sources, most people spend roughly 35–50% of their workweek in meetings. Meetings allow teams to share information, discuss ideas, or devise solutions to workplace challenges freely and synchronously. They offer teams a comfortable and collaborative environment to build strong connections and boost work culture and energy levels. Effective business meetings provide a more meaningful mode of communication than other tools such as SharePoint, chat, or email.
‘Business meetings must have specific objectives for them to be productive,’ said workspace365. At the same time, they allow all members to contribute to maximizing the team’s potential. They are crucial in decision-making; thus, every organization must hold them to ensure proper functioning. Meetings serve multiple purposes in an organization beyond building rapport, more assertive communication, and boosting productivity.
The Purpose Of Meetings
Here is a skeleton form of some of the reasons for holding business meetings:
Making key decisions
Discuss thoughts and ideas
Providing status updates on projects
Sharing company information
Solving organizational challenges
Planning and preparing for action
Negotiating with clients and suppliers
Reviewing and evaluating performance
Generating enthusiasm and cooperation
Understanding situations and sharing experiences
Creating solidarity and continuity in an organization
Types Of Business Meetings
Meetings can either be formal or informal. Formal meetings have a set of rules for convening and conducting them. They follow the organization’s constitution, standing orders or rules, and articles of association. Usually, a specific number of people must be present for the meeting to proceed, and you must maintain written records (minutes) of proceedings. The meeting has an agenda, and a notice is usually relayed to invite those required to attend.
Informal meetings are those that address policy issues and the daily operations of an organization. Unlike formal meetings, they don’t follow any conventional rules. They, however, require an agenda to keep the subject matter on track, with some notes being taken by designated attendees. Departmental meetings held for discussion or brainstorming are an excellent example as they are flexible and don’t necessarily require the taking of minutes. These meetings include the following:
- Decision-Making Meetings
Groups make the most important decisions in a business during meetings. Managers need the team members’ input to make the best possible decisions for the department or company. Attendees are encouraged to share ideas, discuss advantages and shortcomings, explore various options, and provide different perspectives on potential outcomes of certain decisions.
- Brainstorming Meetings
Brainstorming meetings are innovative sessions where teams collaborate to generate creative ideas. They are collaborative meetings where employees are encouraged to listen to their colleagues’ ideas and provide their opinions. Allowing everyone to share their ideas and concerns can identify the best ideas through evaluation and ranking. Brainstorming sessions are vital for the survival and growth of a company as they give it a chance to try something new.
- Team-Building Meetings
Regular team-building meetings in an organization are essential for nurturing effective collaboration among team members. Although all meetings contribute to corporate culture, reinforcing relationships, and team building, certain meetings should specifically focus on team-building activities.
These meetings help to develop personal relationships among team members and make them feel like they are an essential part of their team, unit, branch, department, and company. This way, they will encourage an organization’s growth through satisfaction, performance, and engagement of the employees.
- Problem-Solving Meetings
Problem-solving meetings are typically complex and diverse as they deal with various issues facing the organization. In these meetings, participants are required to come up with various potential solutions to a problem. Employees are encouraged to use their critical thinking and problem-solving skills to provide a solution to any challenges facing a department or organization. The possible solutions offered by the participants are collectively evaluated and brainstormed before they are agreed upon.
- Project Status Update Meetings
These meetings are held to evaluate an ongoing project and determine its current status. The meeting usually involves the project manager, facilitators, and employees working on the project. The main aim of this meeting is to allow the stakeholders to provide insight into the state of the project and mention any existing challenges. Project managers can then address potential and current issues, determine budget status, set new goals, and schedule future status updates.
- Information-Sharing Meetings
Supervisors or managers usually convene these meetings to provide important information regarding the company. The information could be about new products, upcoming changes, events, new clients, new techniques, etc. Most companies today are tech-savvy; thus, visual communication tools, such as videos and slides, are the norm for sharing such information. One person typically delivers the presentation while the audience observes, but they can ask questions at the end of the session.
Benefits Of Business Meetings
Sharing of information: Meetings between staff or the company and clients enable information such as financials or project status to be shared through in-depth discussions about complex issues.
Encourages teamwork: Business meetings enhance teamwork among the staff by providing a form where they can brainstorm and set goals with everyone’s input. They also create teamwork between clients and account managers, enabling them to coordinate their work.
Saves time: Meetings save time since several people gather in one place, and one can address them collectively.
Idea development: Conceived ideas can be analyzed, discussed, and improved in business meetings.
Addressing groups: Different teams have varying needs, and one can divide them and address them individually according to their needs.
Participants feel consulted: Employees feel good when they are consulted. It makes them feel appreciated and encourages them to cooperate willingly and intelligently.
Provides an avenue for feedback: Teams can provide feedback during meetings, which can significantly boost any project’s success.
Enables democratic functioning: Holding business meetings enables organizations to cater to their team member’s welfare. When everyone is involved and allowed to express themselves, that’s democracy.
Gets team members back on track: By discussing, aligning new projects, and sharing status updates in meetings, team members remain on the right track regarding the state of affairs.
Social and emotional support: Collaboration in meetings provides participants personal backing through exchanging ideas.
Various interest groups represented: Business meetings allow all interest groups, including minorities, to participate and be given equal attention.
Build rapport: Team members can have casual conversations during meetings, thus building actual connections.
Diffusion of troublemakers: Meetings allow collective forces to isolate and deal with troublemakers. Those opposing a certain plan can air their views, and supportive people can convince them otherwise.
Firmer decisions: Decisions made in a meeting are concrete as they involve combined consensus.
Business meetings provide a convenient forum to deal with various organizational issues. They are an excellent venue to build team relationships, share ideas, make decisions, and enhance collaboration in a company. Effective business meetings ensure the proper functioning of a business. They are an efficient way to ensure the growth and success of a company.