17 Feb 2017

How can I make meetings more useful?

In our latest advice column for City AM, Debrett's Academy director Rupert Wesson explains how to make meetings work for you.

Q. Most of my day is spent in useless meetings and my colleagues seem blind to the fact that we'd all be more productive if we weren't staring at each other in a room. I have just been promoted and I want to know what I can do to ensure the meetings that I lead are actually effective. 

A: We all seem to spend a disproportionate amount of our time in meetings and, more often than not, they are something of an unhelpful habit rather than a necessity.

You can be reasonably confident that no-one in attendance is clamouring for more, and on that basis you should declare your aim to make meetings shorter, less frequent and more productive. You should also state that you need everyone’s help. Doing so may make it the first agenda item with which everyone is fully engaged!




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