Meetings are an essential component of any healthy functioning workplace. They bring people together to discuss a common goal and the ways to achieve that. Meetings are especially valuable to project managers as they provide an overview of where the team has progressed on a project and a means to brainstorm solutions to any issues.
However, issues occur where the core purpose and efficiency of the meeting are lost. These issues include unprepared participants, scope creep, discussion of too many items and losing priority focus.
One method of tackling these problems is to aim to complete a one-page progress report in 15 minutes within the meeting. This way time spent not working on the project is minimised, key items are discussed, and the cost of the meeting is reduced.
This method is only effective, however, if the items to be discussed are established prior to the meeting. This includes but is not limited to:
1. What did we do last week?
2. What will we do this week?
3. Scope changes/Value added
4. Budget status/Percent complete
5. Schedule status/Deliverable status
6. Input needed from client or others?
7. Other issues/concerns
It is also important to consider the effectiveness of your meetings with your clients. Client meetings signify that as a Project Manager you are proactive and transparent about your projects. From the first meeting, agree on a regular meeting schedule and synchronize your calendars. It will encourage the team to work towards completing milestones whilst keeping your client informed and happy.
To learn more about how to run effective and efficient meetings check out PSMJ Asia Pacific’s Project Management Essentials – Design learning program. It provides architects, engineers and other built environment design professionals with the practical tools needed to achieve successful outcomes in all aspects of project management.
Visit the PSMJ Asia Pacific Training and Learning page to find out more.