After the holiday season, it can be hard to bring the team’s focus back onto work when they’ve spent the past few weeks with family and friends and enjoying holiday gatherings. Part of getting back to being productive requires team meetings. Here are some tips to keep meetings focused and productive in 2020.

Keep Meetings Short

Try to keep meetings under thirty minutes. Attention spans are stretched thin, so having shorter meetings will help optimize your team’s time. After a half hour, your team members will start to become restless, and they will be less likely to contribute to the meeting in a productive way. Some companies hold more meetings than others. It’s a good idea to take a detailed look at how your company uses meetings and to see how your team members feel about them. Are all of the meetings necessary? Do your employees feel like the meetings are helpful? You may need to get creative and have short “walking” meetings instead of seated meetings so that everyone stays energized and focused.

Have a Dedicated Day for Meetings

If your company has regular meetings that require everyone to be there, it’s better to dedicate a whole day just for meetings. The problem with holding meetings every day is that when everyone on the team is at a meeting, no one is actually working and being productive. If you do have a day each week just for meetings, make sure you schedule enough breaks. Give the team opportunities to walk around, get a snack, or do something that will allow them to refocus their energy.

Prep the Team for the Meeting in Advance

Tell your employees what the agenda for the meeting is far enough in advance that they can come prepared. If they know the goals for the meeting from the start, it’ll be easier for everyone to stay on task. It also helps for employees to know what the purpose for each meeting is and what the meeting is meant to accomplish. Without communicating objectives, your team will likely feel like the meetings are a waste of time, even if they aren’t, which in turn, will make it harder for them to stay focused.

Many companies have a hard time keeping meetings productive and focused. Employees easily become distracted when they have to sit still for a long time, especially if they don’t understand the purpose. To help keep meetings more focused in 2020, evaluate your company’s needs to determine if it’s better to have short periodic meetings or to have designated days for just meetings. It’s also important to communicate the purpose and goals of each meeting you have.

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