If you often need to run meetings and give presentations for work, you’ll want each of your meetings to go as well as they possibly can. If they don’t, you’ve not only spent a lot of time preparing for them, but whatever it was you wanted to talk about will be dismissed, and the importance of it will be lost. You might even lose out on a big sale that would have been extremely lucrative. Therefore, it’s critical for business owners and managers to have as many productive meetings as possible. Here are some excellent ideas for holding the most successful business meetings you can.

Get Prepared In Advance

While some meetings may finish with no agreement, and that’s something you’ll need to be aware of, others will end with a handshake over a new supply contract or client. Again, this is why it’s so crucial to be prepared. If you seem as though you don’t know what you’re talking about, the chances of a successful meeting are slim.

Begin by researching the people or business you’re meeting with and ensure that you can make the meeting more personalised; no one is going to think too highly of you if you use a generic meeting style that doesn’t talk about the direct benefits of what you’re proposing. It can also be a good idea to get help from experts such as Benjamin Ball. They are experienced in how to give productive presentations and will offer plenty of advice. Not only will this be better for the meeting, but it will give you more confidence, and that will help too.

Make An Agenda

An agenda will give everyone a clear sense of how long the meeting will run and what comments they can make, and it can be hugely beneficial to create one and pass it to each person at the meeting.

The agenda doesn’t need to be too long or detailed, but it should mention everything that you intend to go through. Bullet points are very effective when it comes to giving a breakdown of the meeting schedule. Distribute the agenda ahead of time so that everyone has as much time as possible to review it and prepare – if you can do these days in advance, that’s even better.

Stick To The Point

It’s extremely easy for a meeting to deviate from the agenda. One comment leads to another, then another, until everyone is talking about something completely unrelated to the reason you’re all there. This is a huge waste of time.

Keep everyone on track and make sure the discussion returns to why you’re all there in the first place. This way, more business will be done, the meeting will not go over time, and you will feel much more successful (as will everyone else).

Follow Up

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that once the meeting is over, you’re done. It’s critical to follow up, particularly if the discussion resulted in a list of actions you need to carry out or that the client or potential partner needs to do. Check to see whether the things that were promised are happening in the right timescale. Simply reminding the people involved of what was agreed upon after a meeting can convert a warm lead into a hot one.

By Rob