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5 easy ways to make meetings more efficient

5 easy ways to make meetings more efficient

Tim Lauenroth

70% of all meetings are a waste of time, 70%! That was the result of a survey conducted by the University of North Carolina. In the survey, 182 senior executives from different industries were asked about the quality of meetings that take place every day at their companies.

Sixty-five percent of the executives said the meetings distracted them from doing actual work and that they would have preferred to spend their time elsewhere instead. Seventy-one percent said the meetings were unproductive and inefficient. That’s a large percentage who aren’t happy with the current meeting structure at their company.

We’ll show you 5 ways to make meetings work more efficiently for you and ultimately make you more productive at work

1. Is the meeting important?

Before it comes to making meetings more effective, you should ask yourself before each meeting if it’s even necessary. Answering this question can save you a lot of time beforehand. When meetings are taking place, ask yourself, “Is it necessary for me to attend this meeting?” This will help you avoid meetings that don’t add value to you ahead of time, and allow you to spend your time on the important things instead. If you are the organizer and don’t see a need for a person to attend the meeting, make sure up front that the person knows they don’t need to attend.

2. Stick to the agreed times

Time is precious and valuable to everyone. This makes it even more important to set a clear time period for meetings that is consistently adhered to. If the meeting is scheduled from eight to nine, participants start at eight and stop at 9 sharp. Regardless of whether someone is late, the meeting starts at the scheduled time. Otherwise, this is unfair to the people who have to wait for the latecomer to arrive.

Our software offers lean solutions in terms of time management to make your meetings or your working time more efficient.

Outlook Integration

timeghost, through its integration with the Microsoft365 environment, offers the ability to transfer your Outlook calendar events directly into the software and enter them there as time entries. So if you have a meeting scheduled in a certain time period, it will be immediately recorded as time in the software.

timeghost stops the time of your meeting in the background

If your meeting takes place via Microsoft Teams, for example, our time tracking software automatically knows when the meeting started and when it ended. The timeghost feed shows you exactly how long the meeting actually lasted and how much it deviated from the scheduled time. In the screenshot from our software you can see the Outlook calendar event on the one hand and below it the automatically recorded Teams meeting that was shorter than planned in Outlook. If your meeting is outside Microsoft Teams, you can use the start/stop feature from our timer to start/stop the meeting to the second.

time tracking of meetings in timeghost

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3. Create positive conflicts

It has been proven that different opinions discussed more often lead to a better solution than a decision approved directly.Responsible for these “positive” conflicts during a meeting are obviously the participants, but most of all the leader, who has to make sure that this conflict culture is tolerated and set within the team during discussions.  By actively asking for different opinions and guiding the meeting so that conflicts can occur,

By actively asking for different opinions and guiding the meeting in a way that allows conflicts to occur, better solutions automatically emerge.

4. Meeting agenda

Set the purpose of your meeting in writing by creating an agenda. Include first and foremost the purpose of the meeting and what is to be accomplished at the end of the meeting. In addition, notes are added in the sense of different agenda items to have a common thread during the meeting. It also allows participants to prepare for the upcoming meeting accordingly. Ideally, you send the agenda to the team the day before so that everyone can prepare accordingly. This requires a lot of discipline, but it pays off because the meeting can be made much more effective.

5. Defining next steps after the meeting

In order to make meetings efficient, the follow-up actions are even more important. The meeting can be as good as it is, but if nothing happens afterwards or tasks are not precisely distributed, then it is useless. Therefore, after each meeting a clear agreement should be made regarding the next steps. The motivation of the employees increases because they know exactly what they have to do to get closer to the goal. So pay particular attention to the end of the meeting. It’s best to ask the group, “Are the next steps clear to everyone?”

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Get the timeghost Teams App 

You only need to install the timeghost Teams App directly from the AppSource Store in the application. You can find a manual on how to do this right here. The timeghost app includes all features that you know from the web client and since you use your Office 365 account in order to access timeghost you’re set and done in only a few seconds. 

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