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#PerfectMeetings Part I: Setting up the Meeting

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For every meeting to be successful, it is important for certain elements to be coordinated. The aim of this blog series is to explain these elements in detail and establish an understanding of the complexities of meeting management and how to overcome them. In this blog, we delve into the first and perhaps the most integral element – the agenda.

The agenda is an aspect of the meeting that provides participants with a conversational framework to help them address the most pressing talking points through productive conversation. 

The success of a meeting often hinges on whether it pushes the customer further along the sales cycle (resulting in pipeline revenue) or whether it helps influence a purchase decision (resulting in more direct business). Agendas are at the very core of the meeting and more often than not dictate whether these conversations are successful or not. 

Curating the agenda is a collaborative process since there are usually multiple stakeholders involved – both internal and external. A pre-meeting survey is an effective tool in helping meeting coordinators receive input from these stakeholders and formulating an agenda that paves the way for a productive conversation. 

The survey is a short questionnaire containing no more than seven to ten questions. These questions are kept short and specific and assess interest levels on various topics, indicate requirements, and express preferences. 

The information from the pre-meeting survey can be used to specify the engagement type based on objectives and desired results, select speakers that are mapped to the specified topics, and gather information on external attendees. 

The next step in creating the agenda is establishing the timeline. Successful meetings need to begin on time and end on time. The timeline ensures that the conversation is kept appropriate and focused.

And finally, Meeting coordinators have to nail down the meeting schedule to ensure that the right participants are present. The schedule of the meeting should be convenient for all those attending the event and this is where it gets tricky. Typically, Meeting coordinators get this done with a combination of emails, to gain meeting confirmations (14 emails on an average), calendars, and spreadsheets to manage meeting details.

Needless to say, this is not as simple as it seems because this process can get extremely manual and cumbersome. Moreover, since building an agenda is a collaborative process, multiple stakeholders are going to be involved, causing data mismatches, duplications, and scheduling errors.

Using a Meeting Automation Platform (MAP) completely replaces obsolete, inefficient processes with a simplified meeting management process to help meeting managers automate every aspect of pre-meeting planning, in-meeting management, and post-meeting analysis and follow-up with ease.

In our next blog, we take a closer look at attendees and the crucial part they play in meetings. 

To learn more about Meeting Automation Platform and how you can schedule more and better meetings at events and trade shows, click on the link below.