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How to Make Boring Meetings More Exciting

Meetings are often needed in business. They are a great way to brainstorm, share information, create solutions, generate processes and so much more. However, they can be incredibly boring. When they are boring, many participants check out mentally. When participants are not paying attention or are unfocused, the meeting becomes a waste of time. A recent article by The Balance highlighted some great ways to make meetings more exciting for all participants:

1. Do not allow smartphones to be used during meetings. People are oftentimes distracted by smartphones in meetings. When people are not allowed to use smartphones, they are forced to stay in the present. They tend to interact more with their colleagues.

2. Prepare. Meetings that have no direction or goal tend to be the most boring. When a meeting moderator has no agenda and simply wings it, the meeting can be tedious and drawn out. However, when there is a plan or purpose, the meeting tends to be more exciting.

3. Have everyone participate. Meetings should be interactive. If the meeting is a brainstorming session, it is particularly important that everyone has a chance to speak. Let your employees know prior to a meeting that participation is encouraged.

4. Do not allow one person to dominate. It is natural for the meeting leader or moderator to speak the most. However, outside of the moderator, one person should not dominate the conversation. Solicit ideas from individuals you know are subject-matter experts in a particular area. This prevents the compulsive talker from simply taking control all of the time.

5. Create actionable items. Meetings that end with no decisions made or action items stated can feel like a waste of time. Everyone should know what the next steps are at the conclusion of the meeting. There should be clear actionable items and subsequent follow-up on these items.