You can’t play football and win if you don’t know the rules of the game. Likewise, you can’t achieve, complete and succeed your projects and meetings if you don’t have the rules set out clearly. We, the mastermind and insider to many meetings of all kinds, will share what you need in order for your meetings to shine. Learn HUONE meeting rules to make good use of everyone’s time!
A monk cannot shave his own head. – proverb in Korean
What does that mean? It means that often times you might be the one who knows the solution to a given problem. However, you might not be good at applying it by yourself. You need your colleagues to work with you and help you out, therefore, you need to be able to make the most of your meetings. At HUONE, we are transparent in everything we do, and we admit that the proverb applies for us too. It’s not easy to have always productive meetings! Therefore, we came up with meeting rules for how to hold a good, rewarding meeting. Let’s have a closer look at our meeting culture at HUONE – don’t worry we promise it’s not too military punctual.
The Most Basic Meeting Rule: No Agenda? No Meeting!
We implemented this rule to avoid the “ummmm why are we here again?” look on your colleagues’ face. Don’t be the person to waste everyone’s time! If there is no agenda for a meeting, why would there even be one? Simple. Have an agenda ready, so everyone is clear on what you are going to cover.
If There’s a Task for Them, Invite Them
We all love a good party with lots of friends. Nothing worse than just a handful of people, quantity over quality?! Your workplace is not there for your attitude, leave it at home. Invite only the people relevant to your meeting goals. If you know there will be action points from the meeting, make sure the right people to fulfil these tasks will be present in your meeting. “But there are people I need to keep in the loop” – no, we take none of that. Meeting minutes are exactly meant for those who you need to keep in the loop! If they need to know, they will read about your amazing meeting afterwards and will have the biggest FOMO for not having been invited. You’re welcome!
HUONE Loves Jumping Jacks – Active Meeting Rule for Longer Sessions
It was the worst of times, it was the best of times – a meeting you’re invited to that lasts longer than 45 minutes! Well, thank goodness the meeting organizer is a smart cookie who has foreseen people’s exhaustion and dropped motivation levels. If you ever host a meeting that’s longer than a good Netflix show, let’s say 45 minutes, then take a break and do something active. A small physical exercise will make everyone more focused and energized. We can power through this meeting! Feel the burn! We believe in you!
No Laptops Allowed Beyond this Control Point: Meeting Rule to Avoid Meeting Ghosts
Meeting ghosts – the phenomenon where you thought you invited people to your meeting, but somehow there’s a bunch of ghosts in the room, hiding behind their laptops and smartphones. Tap tap tap is a sound specific to this species as their fingers go typing on the keyboard. They are scared of nothing, and no threat to their environment can bring their attention off their screens.
To avoid it, use this meeting rule: make it clear to your attendees that no one comes to the meeting with a laptop unless they need it for a specific purpose, say writing down the notes and meeting minutes. It’s funny how people are good at smuggling things even past the sharpest pair of eyes!
Meeting Rule: How You Start the Meeting Matters
What are the first words you say in your meeting, ever thought of that? ‘How you all doin’? Nah, scratch that. Your meeting should always start with well-chosen words. It should start with a sentence that defines the purpose of you being there, gathered together – set this as a meeting rule for yourself. The first sentence reminds everyone of the goal and target of the meeting and sets the tone. “We are here today to xx” – hurray, all your attendees are aligned to work towards the goal!
Who’s in Charge? Who’s leading?
Well hopefully everyone knows who the boss is, otherwise it sounds like there are more serious issues with your organization than bad meetings. This meeting rule is set to emphasise the fact that there shouldn’t be too many sheriffs in one room. Everyone has to know who’s leading the meeting, and who’s helping to take notes. Know your role and own it.
Meeting Rule: Always Send a Follow-Up Email
Every meeting should have an outcome. If there’s an outcome, there are most likely also action points. After each meeting, collate the meeting minutes and send them together with action points to the attendees, and to whoever should be kept up-to-date on your progress. It’s fun to chitchat and talk with everyone during the meeting (ehmm happens to us very often at HUONE), but you must make sure you also clearly divide the responsibilities and actions between everyone during the meeting and send them a follow up afterwards.
Final Meeting Rule: Don’t Forget Structure in Your Follow Up
Your meeting might end, but this is not where the fun stops. This is where the real work starts, and to enable everyone to achieve their tasks, you need to stay structured and give your colleagues clear guidelines. Write your meeting minutes clearly and define the task, its timeline, and the owner of the task. At HUONE we like to write our action points on a table with three columns, WWW(Who, What, When). Easy!
Well well, what do you think? Do you have any golden meeting rules of your own that we should add to our list? Having fresh eyes and ears helps to find new perspectives, so please share your experience with us!
*Picture: HUONE Copenhagen: Puzzle Room