Master Class: Running Effective Meetings When the Stakes are High

Meetings that Save Time Instead of Wasting It

We’ve all sat in a meeting that felt like a waste of time.

Maybe the purpose wasn’t clear. Perhaps the right people weren’t in the room. It could be that the technology platform for the virtual conversation was glitchy. Or the person chairing the session wasn’t skilled at doing so. Or the same people were saying the same things in the same room as they always say….

Life’s too short for unproductive meetings. We all have way too much to do.

Meetings are also expensive. Consider the actual cost of convening all of those people. In fact, Bain & Company will do it for you! They’ve developed a meeting cost calculator. ReadyTalk has captured the true cost of meetings to organizations in this infographic.  

Are meetings worth it?

They are worth it for two reasons or when two conditions are met:

  1. When collaboration is necessary to achieve a goal.

The thing is, that is increasingly true all of the time. Growing specialization, interdependence and complexity mean that we need others’ perspectives. Collaboration fills in our blind spots. It also builds buy-in. As Joel Brockner explores in The Process Matters, people are more inclined to accept a decision they had a role in making, even if that decision negatively affects them. Increased involvement also leads to an increased willingness to take responsibility for following through on decisions made.


  1. When meetings are well-led.

It’s all-too-possible to have a meeting that is clearly needed still go off the rails because of poor facilitation. Getting the right people in the room does not guarantee they will collaborate well once there. Chairing meetings is a skill, and the people at the top of the organizational food chain who often run sessions are not automatically the ones most proficient at doing so. Skillful facilitation usually results in highly focused, productive collaboration where engagement is high, and time is well spent.

Meetings don’t have to be long. In fact, Donna McGeorge argues that 25 minutes is often enough. But they do have to have a clear purpose and strong process.

Join us at the Atlantic Communications Master Class Series, for a session with Dr. Rebecca Sutherns on Running Effective Meetings When the Stakes are High. Learn practical skills and tips for ensuring your time around the meeting table is worth the investment.


Why Professional Development Should be Important to You

Professional development should be part of your PIP, growth plan, development plan or personal plan.  As communicators we need to be able to speak factually and confidently about matters pertaining not only to the practice of communications but to matters impacting the organization or business we work within. How will you gain knowledge about trends and best practices in communications?

Today’s new normal is full of change. Professional development can assist you with creating your own change, keeping up with a change you can’t avoid, knowing about what change might be coming your way and more.

Here are five reasons professional development should be important to you:

  1. Lifelong learning – Career Development

The pursuit of knowledge suits the curious nature of human beings. It enhances social inclusion, self sustainability, employability and competitiveness. If you want to reach the top, you’ll never stop learning along the way.

  1. Get outside your box

We all spend so much time in our workplace, with our colleagues, in our industry that some times we just need to step outside it all and hear from a totally different perspective – plus a day out of the office is a great way to feel refreshed and invigorated

  1. Cross industry pollination

Just like ‘we’ve always done it that way’ can lead to trouble, so can ‘everyone in our industry does it like that’ – a great idea in one industry can be a great idea in another, or repurposed to fit another…

  1. Networking, like brainstorming, can lead to idea sparks

Those questions that get asked at the end of a presentation or that great lunch time conversation – that’s where the real gold can some times be found. Everyone hears and digests information differently, so it’s likely their question or thoughts on the very same information you just heard, are not the same!

  1. Keep up or get left behind

Ensure your capabilities and scope of knowledge is where it should be. Be on the crest of the curve, not behind it. Continue to make meaningful contributions, be an effective team member or leader.

In short, professional development prepares you and opens you up to new possibilities, new knowledge and new skill areas.

Check out all of Swansea Communications professional development events.