One of the key facilitator roles is to know how to design and manage effective meetings. First, sensitize yourself to the ingredients of an ineffective meeting:
|___||lack of clarity about the meeting goal|
|___||a vague or nonexistent agenda|
|___||no time limits on discussions|
|___||no discernible process for working on important issues|
|___||no one facilitating discussions|
|___||people haven't done their homework|
|___||discussions that go off track or spin in circles|
|___||lack of closure to discussions before moving on|
|___||people vehemently arguing points of view rather than debating ideas|
|___||a few people dominating while others sit passively|
|___||meetings that end without detailed action plans for agreed next steps|
|___||absence of any process checking of the meeting as it unfolds|
|___||no evaluation at the end|
At a bad meeting, there's no agenda. Because no one received advance warning about the focus of the meeting, no one comes prepared. The person running the meeting does not offer process tools for managing any of the discussions. He or she simply introduces topics and issues or gives updates of previous activities.
Since there's no discernable structure, conversations tend to float around. Individuals introduce side ...