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Subunit 1: Using meeting effectively
Topic A: Do you need a meeting?
The first thing that one needs to decide is whether they really need a meeting. The meeting can be of great importance if there is an issue that is to be discussed in the meeting. To have a meeting, one must have an idea of the things that they wish to discuss during the meeting. It is the initial stage where one sees the problem that should be handled during the meeting and decide whether it is important to have the meeting or not. The choice to have a meeting or not depends on the decision that one makes at this stage.
B. knowing your aims
The aims of the meeting should be discussed as it helps to set up an agenda for the meeting. It is not possible to come up with a meeting if you do not have items that will be discussed during the meeting. Once you have listed the aims of the meeting, you will be able to come up with objectives that can help you to have a successful meeting. The aims of the meeting also help different people within the meeting to know what they are expected to present during the meeting. It is an important stage that ensures you can use the meeting effectively to achieve the aims that you have set.
C. Meeting informally
Before the actual meeting, you can decide to meet informally. It is important because it helps you to brainstorm the aims with other members of the group. Meeting informally also helps in coming up with other aims that you might have forgotten when coming up with the aims for the meeting. It is also an important aspect because it gives you the opportunity to inform the members of the meeting and what they are expected to discuss during the meeting. It is an opportunity to be able to know the mood of the group members and decide whether it is appropriate to include other things for the meeting or not.
D. Meeting formally
Once you have met the members informally, it lays out the platform to meet formally. During the formal meeting, the group members have the opportunity to discuss the aims and objectives that have been set. At this stage, every member already has aims of the meeting and has prepared points to present during the meeting. The meeting is formal at this stage and members are only expected to come with points in relation to the topic they have been given. This is the point where you know what the members think about the actual points that you have and note them down to be used in developing the organization.
One of the things that you have to put into consideration if you really want to make good use of a meeting is revolutionizing the meeting. It is important that you come up with new ways of doing things so that you can revolutionize the whole meeting. People are always willing to attend meeting where they feel they will learn new things. It is only through revolutionizing that you can be sure to get the attention of the members and therefore get the best out of the meeting. It is an opportunity to test you innovation skills and see whether you have the ability to come up with new ways of doing things.
It is only possible to have a successful meeting if you keep information flowing throughout the meeting. As a manager, you have to provide members with information about the meeting and what is expected of them during the meeting. You should also create an environment where they are willing to share the information they have for the success of the meeting. Communication helps in sharing ideas so that people can work together towards the development of the organization and also improve on the cohesion of the members. The manner in which you communicate with the other members helps you to get information from them so that you can change on the strategies being used in the organization.
G. Choosing the right type of meeting
Not all the meetings that one will attend can be of great help. If you are attending a meeting with the intention of getting some skills that can enable you to improve the manner in which you do your things in the organization, then you need to make the best choice. The meeting that you choose to attend will determine the extent to which the whole process will be a success on your part. To choose the meeting that you will attend, you have to know the aims of the meeting and the topic that are people are expected to discuss during the meeting. It is the only way that you can use to get the best information out of any meeting that you need to attend.
H. keeping on track
To use a meeting effectively, you have to keep track of the things that you discuss in the meeting. Most of the meetings that you can opt to visit will have follow-up meetings that are meant to discuss the progress of the things that were discussed in the previous meetings. Following up enables you to make changes that have been suggested in the next meetings so that you can experience the end desirable result. The step also helps you not to lose focus in the things that were previously discussed in the meeting. It is the best way of ensuring that you do not get your mind off the topic.
Subunit 2: preparing for a meeting
Topic A: Inviting participants
To be able to have a meeting, the first thing that any person needs to be sure of, is the fact that there are people to attend the meeting. There can be no meeting if there is no other person apart from you that is willing to get into meeting. You can either decide to invite them as a group or individually based on how you know them. Inviting them as a group is better because you do not have to take a lot of convincing each of them that the meeting will be of great importance for them. Depending on the size of the meeting that you wish to have, you will know the exact number of invitations that you will send out to the participants who wish to attend the meeting.
B. Preparing an agenda
When you make up your mind that you need to have a meeting, it is important to come up with an agenda for the same. The agenda is a very important tool that can be used to convince people that the meeting is really of great importance. You have to set up an agenda that will attract many people so that you can have views from different people during the meeting. The agenda should be related to what the groups that you have invited for the meeting do in their respective groups. It is important to match the agenda with the aim of the groups so as to get most of them to attend the meeting.
C. Locating a meeting
Setting the location for a meeting is a very important part of the process of preparing for a meeting. There are many factors that one should consider when setting up a location that will be used for a given type of meeting. One has to ensure that all the facilities that they need during the meeting are available in the location. This will not only reduce the cost of carrying out the meeting but will also ensure that they have the best experience with everything that they need during the meeting. The location should also take into consideration the time one will take to reach the location as well as the cost of getting there.
D. Seating participants
Once you have selected a location, the next thing to do is to find out how to seat the participants in the best way. At this point, you already have the list of all the people who will be attending the meeting and the next thing that you need to do is ensure that they are comfortable during the meeting. The manner in which one arranges the seats is very important. It should be done in a way that enables every participant to have the ability to participate and view every speaker on the stage since it is one of the practices they need to master when attending the meeting. There are different ways that can be used for the seating patterns so that every participant can have the equal opportunity of participating in the meeting.
E. Preparing practicalities
Practical activities are some of the most important aspects that one will have to take into consideration when coming up with a meeting. You have to set up all the facilities that will required for such practical projects because they are important parts of the meetings. It is also important that you inform the participants in advance that they will take part in practicalities that can help them to improve the manner in which they perform related tasks. The practical projects should not take a lot time preparing during the meeting that is why it is important that you do the preparation in advance. The preparation phase gives you the opportunity to brainstorm on all the things that will be needed for the practical activities’ so that you do not end up messing when the meeting is on.
Subunit 3: Attending a meeting
Topic A: Taking an active role
When attending a meeting, it is important to ensure that you keep an active role during the whole session. It helps you to get the information without missing any of the important points that might come up during the meeting. You can do this by asking questions where necessary and ensuring that you also contribute your though where necessary. It is an important way of ensuring that your mind remains in the topic during the meeting and that you do not end up thinking of other things that might get you away from the meeting. It is through active participation that you can also get to interact with other people who can help develop the knowledge that you have before you attend the meeting.
B. Being seen and heard
An important aspect of attending a meeting is ensuring that you are present both in person and in mind. There are people who attend meetings but their minds might not be concentrating on the things that are being said during the meeting. The best way to achieve this is by asking questions where you do not understand and also ensure that you add on clarifications on the points that you do know more about. You have to ensure that you are punctual to the meeting so that you get to sit in place where you can participate in the meeting well. In most cases, anyone that wants to gain a lot from the meeting will arrive in the meeting early and sit at the front sit so that they do not lose concentration during the meeting.
C. Listening on other
To communicate properly during the meeting, it is important that you take time to listen to what others are saying. Once you listen to what they are saying, it can be possible to challenge their thoughts or even ask questions about the things they have said. Listening effectively means that you can write down the points as they talk. It helps in maintaining attention throughout the meeting to ensure that you are productive and also come out with knowledge from the meeting. Listening also helps you to get the attention when you get the opportunity to speak at the meeting.
D. Handling problems
Problems might arise during the meeting and it requires that people should come up with ways of solving them. The best way to do this is to try asking questions that can lead into such problems so that you also become part of the solving process. By engaging in the process of solving a problem, you will get the opportunity to concentrate on other problems that might arise during the meeting. Meetings that have problems end up being successful because they bring out practicalities that one can relate with in real life. Handling the problems also helps you to improve your problem solving skills that can help you in your day to day life.
E. Taking minutes
Taking minutes help you to keep a record of the things that were said during the meeting. It is also a god way that you can use to be active during the meeting. You can always refer to the minutes in case you need clarifications after the meeting. It is not possible to grips everything that has been said. By recording, you also get the chance to revisit and know what people discussed in the previous meeting in case there is another upcoming meeting. It also gives the opportunity to put into practice your minute taking skills.
F. Evaluating your skills as a participant
It is also important to evaluate yourself. After the meeting, you have to sit down and see how you perform during the meeting. It is a step that will ensure you come up with ways of improving your performance in the next meeting. It is will also help you know your strengths and weakness and what you need to do to be able to perform better during meetings. The skills you have can help you in real life situations that relate to the meeting that you attended.
Subunit 4: Chairing a meeting
Topic A: understanding the role
As the chair of a meeting, it is important to understand you roles well. The roles define how you will behave during the meeting and the things that members should expect from you during the meeting. As the chair, you are expected to provide direction. You should have such skills that will enable you to control the manner in which people discuss during the meeting. Members tend to follow the behavior of the leader and it is the manner in which you behave that will determine whether the meeting will be a success or not.
B. Researching attendees
Since you are the leader, it is your duty to see how people have been attending the meeting. People might be given allowances at the end of the meeting and it is important that you know who has been attending the meeting. This is important because it also gives you an idea of the people that you should invite in the next meeting. You will know the people who are genuinely interested in the meeting and those who are not. Knowing your attendees also gives you the opportunity on how you should treat different attendees to make them gain from the whole process.
C. Pacing the meeting
As the chair, you also determine the pace of the meeting. You have to come up with a plan that you can use. The plan should spell out the activities that should be carried out within a given period so that the meeting fits within the set time. When setting the meeting, attendees are always informed that they will be in the meeting for a certain period of time. It is important to come up with a schedule that can space all the activities that will be carried out during the meeting.
D. Controlling a meeting
There are times when discussions might arise in a meeting. In this case, it is still important that you come up with ways of ensuring that you can control the members. The members should know that you are the chair in this case. You have the duty of controlling the number of people talking at any given time. It is important to let one person to talk at any given time to avoid confusion.
E. Keeping order
Where there are many people, there should be a mode of operation. The mode of operation will be provided by the chair and it will be the duty of the participants to follow. As the chair, you have to ensure that you let people to interact with respect. Interruptions should be minimized by the chair. The roles that relate to keeping order help the meeting to be a peaceful place where learning can take place.
F. Closing a meeting
As the chair, it is also your duty to close the meeting once people are done. You have to thank the attendees for behaving well during the meeting. You also have to encourage them to make use of the things that they have learned in the meeting. Going forward, you also have to encourage them to attend the next meeting that you will have. It is the best way to close a meeting because it gives them the chance to hope for another similar meeting in future.
G. Using formal procedure
As a chair of a meeting, you should be equipped with all the formal procedures to be followed. You should ensure that the members follow the procedures that they should be following. Some of them might not know the procedure that they should be following during the meeting. It is you duty as the chair to inform them of the procedures. Formal procedures help the attendants to have some order and they can also learn from you.
H. Solving problems in formal meeting
Problems will have to be solved in the formal meetings. The chair is the one that should lead people through the whole process. The reason you are the chair is because you have experience and better skills that can be used to solve problems that people experience during the meeting. You should be aware of the problems that will be solved during the meeting. It helps to be confident and lead the attendees during the meeting.
I: Evaluating your skills as a chairperson
Once the meeting is over, you have to evaluate you performance as the chair of the meeting. In case the meeting was a success, there are many chances that you performed well. In case the meeting failed, it can be concluded that you did not do your part well as the overall leader of the meeting. Complaints from the participants should also be addressed so that you do not make such mistakes in the next meeting. Evaluation is important as it helps you to improve your performance as the chair any other meeting.
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