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Make Meetings More Effective With a Productivity-Boosting Agenda

Meetings can often turn into endless time-wasters that leave employees tired, confused and feeling very unproductive. All your meetings need to turn things around is an organized agenda that will give everyone an idea of what will take place and ensure that no one veers off course.

First, your agenda should include the three P's -- Purpose, Process and Payoff. Why is the meeting taking place, what is the intended result and how will those participating benefit? Then, it should include the agenda basics: start and end times, location, and what topics will be covered. Including the expected duration of each topic and the expected outcomes will also help keep your meetings in check.

When you've completed the agenda, make sure to send it out to all those who will be involved in the meeting. This way, they have an opportunity to prepare beforehand and know what to expect. When the meeting is taking place, make sure everyone there is being involved. If not, there is no reason for them to be there.

Most importantly, actually stick to the agenda during the meeting. Don't allow items to exceed their allocated duration times, otherwise you will quickly lose control of the meeting. Be meticulous about this. When the meeting is over, make sure something has been achieved and everyone there has at least one action item to take with them.

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We want to hear from you! How do you keep your meetings on track? Share your thoughts on Twitter or in the comments!

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(Photo credit: © Kelly Young - Fotolia.com)

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