8 ways to keep your team engaged during meetings
If you are struggling to keep your team motivated and proactive during meetings then perhaps you need to rethink the way you present and approach the structure and content of these sessions. Below are some simple ideas to help you get the most from your team...
Ensure your team know the purpose of the meeting and their role in attendance. Getting their buy in from the start will help to keep them engaged, especially if they know they have a role to play and the importance of that role within the project
Create an agenda and stick to it. If you do not do this your team will start to see their precious time drift away. This may cause resentment and it is likely that those who have no part to play will drift off as they see less and less relevance to why they were asked to attend. This means that their attention may not be 100% when you are covering the agenda item
Make sure your meeting starts on time – as scheduled. Otherwise those who made the effort to be punctual may start to lose interest as they clock watch their colleagues rolling in. It also sets the standard for the next meeting and shows that you are serious about conducting an effective meeting
The 10,20,30 Rule
When presenting stick to the 10, 20, 30 rule – 10 Slides max, keep your presentation to 20 mins and use 30pt font min. Pictures are great for putting across your points and remember people like being presented to, rather than read to. Also, when presenting, make sure that your bullet points appear on click rather than, on permanent display from the outset. If you don’t do this your team will already have read the content of your slide before you’ve had a chance to present it
Keep an eye on the room temperature and ensure that everyone in your team has adequate refreshments at hand. Never underestimate the importance of a glass of water or a good quality coffee – hydrate your team
Ask your team questions during the meeting. Let them know that you will be doing this at the start and just see how this improves their engagement
Ideas, ideas, ideas
Start the session with some brainstorming techniques to engage your colleagues straight away. Remember these rules:
- Criticism of ideas isn't allowed
- All ideas, no matter how wild, are encouraged
- The more ideas, the better
- Every participant should try to build on or combine the ideas of others
Finally, at the end of the meeting why not review its effectiveness with your team and see where improvements can be made for the next one.