Tips for running a successful meeting

At times, managing a meeting can be difficult and exhausting, and a poorly run meeting is a frustrating experience for both the leader of the meeting and its attendees. The following is a list of tips to help mitigate that frustration and assist your physician leaders in running a successful meeting:

  • Cancel the meeting if there isn't a good reason to meet. 
  • Time the agenda. Assigning a time frame in which to discuss each agenda item will ensure that you don't try to cram a two-hour meeting into one-hour.
  • Work with the individual who will be supporting the meeting to ensure that members are prepared for the meeting (i.e., they receive and review in advance the meeting materials).
  • Ensure individuals responsible for specific agenda items are ready to present those topics.
  • Respect the punctual committee members by always starting meetings on time
  • If you have allotted 15 minutes for an agenda item--and the committee can't reach a decision concerning that topic--table the item for a special meeting on that particular issue. (This idea alone might get the committee to reach consensus). You may also opt to assign two to three committee members to research the issue and bring back a recommendation at the next meeting.
  • Limit non-productive and/or emotional discussion.  This is tough but a timed agenda will help limit this type of discussion.
  • Consider the use of an LCD projector (rather than always using paper meeting packets) to focus the group's attention on the agenda item under discussion. This eliminates the noise and nuisance of riffling through the agenda packet and is more enviornmentally conscious.
  • If individuals come to a meeting late, never review agenda items that have already been concluded.
  • Always end meetings on time.
  • Thank committee members for their participation.