You can help make team meetings more effective by considering the following practices.
- Schedule all meetings at the beginning of each year.
- Plan 60-90 minutes for each meeting.
- Meet at least twice a month in the first year of implementation.
- Meet at least once a month in the following years.
- Err on the side of over-scheduling, as it is easier to cancel unnecessary meetings than it is to add emergency meetings later.
Norms can help clarify expectations, promote open dialogue, and serve as a powerful tool for holding members accountable.
—Patrick M. Lencioni, author of Overcoming the Five Dysfunctions of a Team
Establishing norms helps teams understand the ground rules for each meeting and keep everyone on task. Use this worksheet to develop your meeting norms:
Without adherence to established norms, meetings tend to suffer from common mistakes. Address the following problem areas through your norms:
- When the team leader is absent, the meeting structure is non-existent.
- There is too much or too little written documentation of the meeting.
- There are simultaneous conversations.
- Discussions go on tangents or off-topic.
- A lack of data is used at the meeting.
Identify Roles and Responsibilities
Each role needs to be filled for each meeting. Determine who will fill each role in advance of each meeting.
- Time keeper.
- Note taker/action plan recorder.
- Norms monitor.
- Data analyst.
- Active team members.