Starting or ending a meeting late ranks as the No. 1 complaint about company meetings, according to a survey by Accountemps.
Top pet peeves about company meetings among senior managers:
- Not keeping to the schedule 31%
- Unnecessary meetings 27%
- People using PDAs or laptops for nonmeeting-related activities 18%
- People interrupting each other 15%
- Meetings scheduled during lunch 9%
One way to bring value to your role as an administrative professional is to proactively address some of these peeves, so your executive can work more effectively.
- Attach time allotments for each agenda item.
- Volunteer to be timekeeper for a standing meeting, to make sure the team sticks to the allotted times on the agenda.
- When off-subject topics derail the meeting schedule, “park” them on a whiteboard titled “Parking Lot.” The group can acknowledge the topic, then get on with the agenda.
- Close the meeting door, punctually, at the designated meeting time to signal the start of the meeting. You have a better chance of keeping to a schedule if the meeting starts on time.
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