5 Common Business Meeting Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

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You call for a business meeting. When everyone arrives, you can tell that they don’t want to be there. You try to brighten things up by using buzzwords and talking in an energetic voice but that doesn’t seem to be grabbing their attention. It could be that you’re being a tad too distracting.

You want to make your employees pay attention without forcing it like in the example above. Forcing it will only take their minds off the meeting. Being distracting is only one of the many mistakes that you can make during a meeting.

Keep reading for an entire list of the biggest business meeting mistakes that you could make and how you can avoid them.


1.  You Don't Pick Out the Right Venue 

Not every office is large enough to house a large meeting room so you'll have to go off campus so to speak. Choosing a venue sets up the mood for the entire meeting so the largest mistake that you can make is to choose the wrong one. Here are a few things that you'll need to consider if you want to pick the best meeting venues

Size

You want your employees to be able to move through the room comfortably. That's why when you're choosing a size you need to go up a little. So, if you plan to have 20 employees at the meeting, choose a meeting room that can accommodate 40-50 people.  

You should also check out the venue before you purchase it. Actual size doesn't equal capacity. A room that says it can fit 50 people may still be too small because of the shape of the room or the size of the furniture. 

Location

When considering a venue think about how easy it will be for your employees to get there. If everyone is from around the same area, then it's not that hard. What makes it complicated is bringing in people from out of town. 

Your best bet, in that case, will be to choose a venue near an airport or local hotels. This way they won't have to drive far from where they are coming in / staying. 

Mood 

We talked a little bit about mood above. You don't want to choose a venue that screams party when you're discussing business. Picking a venue that doesn't reflect the mood that you're trying to give off is extremely distracting. 


2. You Don't Have a Purpose 

You can book the best venue in the world but if the meeting lacks a real purpose then you're wasting your time and your employee's time. Status reports and project instructions do not a meeting make. That can be delivered to them in the form of a quick email. 

Think about your meeting purpose beforehand and type it out on a document along with any other points you're wanting to cover. Print them out and hand them out before the meeting starts so the employees go in knowing what to expect. 

You want your meetings to be short and concise otherwise your employees' attention will start drifting halfway through. This kind of planning will stop things from dragging on.  


3. You Don't Allow Everyone to Participate

It's easy to let the more outgoing individuals control the entire meeting. If you don't get the participation of the entire group, however, you will have some that start to tune things out. You want to keep everyone paying attention so this is no good. 

Some shyer employees may want to make their opinions known. If they are more withdrawn, they won't though because they can't find a point in the meeting to speak up. You'll need to help them out a little bit.

If you notice an employee being quiet, turn to them and ask them what their thoughts are on the meeting topic. This will give everyone the chance to speak rather than just a select few. 


4. You're Misusing Tech

You want meetings to be quick which means you have no time for dysfunctioning tech. Nothing will make the meeting drag on like a powerpoint presentation that won't display or a video that won't play. You may be thinking that you can do meetings without them but you can't. 

Most meetings rely on displaying a large amount of information to several people. Technology allows you to do this easier. Besides, most people enjoy taking notes and it's hard to do that if you don't have a screen displaying information. 

To avoid any hangups, go to the meeting room an hour or so before the meeting is taking place to test out your tech. This way, if there is going to be a problem you can fix it before the meeting rather than wasting time during. 


5. You're Being Distracting 

You take out a bag of chips during the meeting and munch as the table discusses because you skipped out on breakfast. You may not realize it but this is distracting. The sound of the bag opening coupled with the crunch and chewing can really take someone out of their thoughts. 

Also, try and pay complete focus on the conversation taking place during the meeting. If you're having a side conversation with another person that is also distracting. 


Business Meeting Mistakes That Will Ruin the Entire Thing 

Every business needs to hold meetings rather employees like it or not. If you make them engaging for all, you should have no problem actually getting your employees to not groan in frustration when you announce one. Avoid these common business meeting mistakes and use some of these tips to get started in the right direction.

Proper meetings are just one important aspect of running a business. Visit our blog for more great tips like the ones here. 

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