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A Finite Resource

Rhodia CEO meeting book
Rhodia CEO meeting book

What we cannot make more of we need to use wisely. We cannot make more time and yet we waste a lot of it. At work we waste a lot of it in meetings. According to a study by the Wharton Center for Applied Research, Executives, senior and middle management spend about 30%-60% of their time in meetings, but felt just 56% of this time was time well spent.

An important reason we use notebooks is to keep ourselves organized and hopefully by being organized save ourselves time. Any notebook can be used as an organizational tool, but in some cases a specialized notebook can help. Lovenotebooks has added the Rhodia CEO meeting book to our notebook selection, because we believe it will save you time and make your meetings more productive.

A lot of companies and state and local governments are cutting cost left and right, without ever noticing the enormous cost of unnecessary or badly run meetings. Poorly managed meetings cost not just time and money, but also have a negative impact on workplace enjoyment and motivation.

Like most things, a proper meeting has three steps to it and skipping a step is sure to result in a waste of time.

Preparation i.e. What is your agenda, your goal, Do you need a meeting to achieve your objective (very important) and if you do who really needs to be present? When will we have the meeting, what time of day or day of the week. Where will we have the meeting. Always ask yourself do we really need to sit down. If you can do the meeting standing up, it is more likely to be brief. Share the agenda and specific expectations you have for each attendee (If you do not have a reason for them being there why are they invited?) before the meeting to increase the quality of the input you will receive.

The meeting: Who is running the meeting? Someone has to be in charge follow the agenda and keep an eye on the clock. A free for all is not productive, because you are sure to get the loudest but not the most valuable opinion and will almost certainly end up discussing issues not relevant to your goal. How long is the meeting? Set a time and keep to it. Stay on point and conclude each point with an action, that is required to achieve your meeting’s goal. At the end of the meeting summarize what has been discussed; connect required actions to specific persons or teams and connect a deadline.

Follow up. Recap the meeting; reiterate goal and actions required and deadlines connected to each action via email or a paper hand out and make sure each party confirms back to you.

Write a brief review for yourself, while the meeting is fresh. Focus on what parts of the meeting were unproductive and why. This will allow you to save even more time the next time around, because there are sure to be more meetings.