What to do for Effective and Efficient Working Meetings

We all like effective and efficient working meetings.

What do we do to plan them, or how do we improve our recurring ones?

Are we prepared to do things differently? If so, we can collect information so we know what we want to improve and by how much.

We talk about best practices of meeting evaluations for those that we plan and facilitate and those recurring team meetings.


What about your meetings now? Do you think WHAT you do (its effectiveness) needs to be improved? Or HOW you do it (its efficiency) could be better? What statement would you first put on your evaluation form?

Example Efficiency Statements

  • good time management
  • good meeting pace
  • having clear purpose
  • having and following agenda
  • full participation of all attendees
  • staying on topic
  • good communication between attendees
  • staying on schedule with project plan

Example Effectiveness Statements

  • working on the right things
  • accomplishing assigned work
  • focusing on work processes and system issues
  • looking for root causes
  • using data
  • involving the right people

Ask 1 or 2 open-ended questions, too.

Try questions like:

  • The meeting would have been better if:
  • What made this meeting more useful?
  • What suggestions do you have for the facilitator?

These examples were taken from: Tague, Nancy R. The Quality Toolbox, 2nd ed. ASQ Quality Press. 2005. pp. 347-348.

Other Quality during Design podcast episodes you might like:

Use Meetings to Add Productivity

Get clarity on goals with a continuum