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Manage meetings Essay

What are the different types of formal meetings that might be held in a workplace and what purpose do they serve?
– Board meetings
Information on current organisational status
– Staff meetings
Productivity, current procedures and changes in procedures
– Union meetings
Ensure all staff know their rights in the workplace
– Occupational health and safety meetings
For staff and OH&S officials to ensure organisation is running safely and within compliances

How do you ensure that the formal meetings you organise are productive and effective, not simply time-wasters? – Clearly identify the purpose of the meeting
– Identify major points and topics to be discussed before the meeting
– Also by staying on track and bringing it back to topic throughout the meeting.

How could you determine the items that will be included on an agenda and how could you distribute agendas to the relevant personnel? Does this result in meetings that achieve their intended purpose? Explain and give examples to support your answer. You can determine what must be included on an agenda by its relevance and importance to the organisation, including staff in this process. Distribution of the agenda should occur before the meeting time, allowing for those who cannot attend to say so.

This can be done electronically, through pigeon holes or delivered straight to the attendee. Depending on the required attendance depends on if the meeting will need to rescheduled due to lack of attendance. This ensures that the meeting does not become a time waster and relevant information is brought to the relevant employees. For example a meeting for all staff about the OH&S on a production line would be pointless to those who work in sales only. Making it a time waster for those who work in sales.

You are about to hold a meeting for the management team in an organisation. A number of productivity problems/ issues need to be discussed and you have asked one of the managers to prepare a presentation (which includes a PowerPoint presentation) on what productivity means and how it can be increased/ improved. Where would you hold such a meeting and why would you choose this venue? Draw up a list of the equipment and resources (including hardcopy handouts) you would need and describe (or draw a diagram of) the seating arrangements you would organise. When and how would you distribute the agenda?

See ACT2_1.docx

Briefly describe the methods you might use to prepare, proof and distribute meeting documentation, notes or handouts. The meeting may be any kind of meeting including work related, social, sporting. Are these the most efficient and effective methods? Explain why you use these current methods and how and why you think improvements could be made. I believe doing most this electronically is the most effective way to prepare and distribute information, despite the kind of meeting, however technology can also be unreliable so having hard copies of all documentation is essential to prevent any mishaps or miscommunications.

Using hard copies for handouts rather than everyone using devices can also assist those whose eyes do not cope well with looking at a screen for lengthy periods of time. It also allows people to makes notes easily. When proofreading a document, I would either take a step away from it for a while and come back with fresh eyes, or, I would ask a colleague if they would mind having a look over for me.

What procedures might you follow to ensure the meeting arrangements will meet your requirements or needs? Write a list that could be incorporated in a procedure relating to meeting arrangements. – Place a booking (if required) where it is you would like the meeting to take place. Ensuring you have enough time for set up prior to the meeting and confirming your booking a day or two before hand. – Check all equipment required (laptops, whiteboards, markers, data projectors) is accessible in the room – Check that all equipment is working, and ensure those giving the presentations know how to use it – Ensure seating arrangements are organised

– Ensure all documentation handouts, paper, and pens are organised

If a meeting deviates from its planned agenda, what can be done to bring it back on track? The chairperson should bring the meeting back to order. The chairperson can even opt to writing the ideas on a board and they can be brought out for discussion later on if time persists.

Why is a chairperson necessary?

The chairperson ensure the meeting time is well spent and not wasted. They bring the conversation back to the agenda if participants begin to digress from the topics of discussion.

Who should chair meetings? Why?
The role of chair should rotate with each meeting. This allows those to gain experience communicating with colleagues and staff.

How long should each meeting last? Why?
The meeting should only last as long as necessary in order to achieve its purpose.

How can active participation in meetings be encouraged?
Acknowledge the participants when ideas are spoken. Thank them for their input. Allow participants to put something on the agenda either before the meeting or for the next.

Why are minutes necessary?
Minutes are necessary for the organizations records. They allow those who did not participate to know where the organization is at with decisions. This is the same for stake holders and shareholders. Prevents any misunderstanding if who is responsible for any changes. They can also enable people to look back on actionable items and give a starting point for the following meeting.

What confidentiality issues might impact on the information discussed in meetings?
– financial discussions
– the release of a new product
We don’t want outside parties to know sensitive information about the organization. The last thing we want is for a competitor to catch wind of a new product and beat us to the punch. Also, personnel issues, commercially sensitive information, strategic information.

Explain how you would brief a minute taker at one of the meetings you might organise. Describe the purpose and style of the meeting and outline the information you would share with the minute taker. The minute taker should have a general outline of the meeting. Format of the minutes will vary depending on the meeting content and agenda.

Describe how minutes could be recorded, authorised and despatched to meeting participants. – Hand written and typed up after the meeting

– typed into a PC or laptop during meeting (could be printed off at the end of meeting) – meeting can be recorded with voice recorder and then typed after meeting Minutes should be distributed as soon as possible after a meeting. Within 24 hours if meetings are weekly, otherwise within a week. Can be emailed, faxed, placed in pigeon holes or hard copies delivered to those concerned. Some cases one copy will be placed on a bulletin board where participants need to read and sign.

How would you determine what formatting procedures should be followed? Format will be determined by the organisation in which you are employed. It would also be determined by the people that will be present and the type of meeting.

Describe how a report of a meeting differs to the minutes.
The minutes give a clear outline of what when on in the meeting, whereas a report will explain the outcome.

Give an example of when a report of a meeting, rather than minutes, might be required. A report may be required to stakeholders, CEO, bored members after a meeting has taken place to explain the outcome of the meeting.

Why is it important to create a meeting agenda that reflects the style and structure of the meeting and to send it, together with any papers, to all participants? What items should be included on an agenda? An agenda allows the chairperson to keep the meeting on track. It gives a clear outline of what needs to be discussed. Sending it through to participants allows them to bring forth issues and ideas of their own before the meeting allowing the chair to allocate time to their presentation. Items that should be included on the agenda are, items of interest, time frames for each item, time for discussion of previous meeting.

What are the attributes of an effective and efficient meeting? What are the responsibilities of the chairperson in a meeting? An effective and efficient meeting should run smoothly and on time. Time shouldn’t be spent speaking about matters that do not directly affect the reasons for the meeting, the chair person is responsible for ensuring this.

How does briefing the minute taker prior to the meeting improve efficiency? What information should be included in minutes? Why is it important to check minutes, distribute them and make any necessary reports as soon as possible after the meeting? By briefing the minute taker, they have the opportunity to best work out the format for taking minutes. Information that should be included are topics of discussion, who the chair and minute taker are, all participants who have spoken, roles and responsibilities that have been decided on. It is important to distribute the minutes as soon as possible to ensure the meeting is still fresh in the participants minds, and to ensure any actions that need to be taken are clear and understood by all involved.

There are a number of key provisions of relevant legislation and regulations from all levels of government that that may affect aspects of business operations. Why is it necessary to have a working knowledge of the legislation involved in business? It is necessary to ensure none of these legislations are ignored and that all staff are abiding by the policies and procedures in accordance with legislations.

Why does the chairperson need to understand group dynamics when chairing a meeting? Chair person is responsible for the smooth running of the meeting, understanding the group dynamics plays a big role in that. They also need to understand how to deal with shy people, dominant people, quiet times, and to ensure everyone has a chance to contribute.

Why is it important to have diversity in teams and amongst employees? Why do you need to be aware of culturally appropriate techniques when communicating with people from diverse backgrounds and with diverse abilities? It is important to ensure no employee is discriminated against. Being culturally aware ensure that you will not accidently (or unfortunately in some cases, purposely) offend an employee due to their cultural background. The advantage to having a diverse group is different people have different outlooks, doesn’t matter if it’s different cultural background, religion, marital status, age, sex, or sexual orientation. With so many people having different outlooks you have a wider variety of ideas and inputs.

A management meeting for 12 section managers is due to be held on Tuesday, 24 November commencing at 9.30am and finishing at 4.00pm. The CEO of the company will attend. The meeting is usually held in the boardroom at the company’s offices but this room is unavailable. You will need to make alternative arrangements. Write out a meeting plan to ensure that all the preparations for the meeting will be correctly organised. See Project1.docx

Identify and explain 5 areas that you feel are important to a successful meeting. You may need to conduct some research to complete this question.

There are no definitive answers for these questions however but answers could include: Talk to the Audience.
Be Logical.
Only Talk When You Have Something to Say.
Hold different meetings for different types of information.
Use Visuals Sparingly but Effectively.
Provide Appropriate Acknowledgments.
Be yourself.
Make your presentation readable
Distribute a handout
Know the audience
Connect with your audience.
Have fun

Explain the role of the agenda and what would be included. The agenda should mirror the tone and style that the chairperson wishes to set for the actual meeting. It should be sent out in good time so that participants have time to understand why they have been asked to attend and to prepare themselves.

Items on the agenda might include:
welcome
minutes of the previous meeting
matters or business arising from the minutes
correspondence
reports
major agenda items, presenters (where relevant)
general business
questions/ new ideas/ participant input
date of next meeting
close

How do you ensure that the meetings you organise are productive and effective? An effective and efficient meeting is one that is well chaired so that outcomes are achieved, ethics are observed and organisational requirements met. A good meeting enables each person to contribute fully and uses an appropriate style to achieve what is needed.

The chairperson convenes the meeting, introduces the agenda and keeps discussion in line with the agenda. The chairperson can be elected or appointed and should be able to control the meeting so the time spent is not wasted time and discussions do not move across to inconsequential or irrelevant tangents. Whenever a discussion goes on for longer than it should, or goes off topic, the chairperson should call the meeting back to order. If new ideas or problems, not related to the agenda, are brought up, the chairperson can ensure that they are placed on the agenda for the next meeting. The chairperson should also ensure that the minutes for the previous meeting are available and make certain that minutes for the upcoming meeting will be taken appropriately.

Make a list of the skills and knowledge that mangers need to successfully manage a meeting. There are no definitive answers for these questions however possible answers could include:

Active Listening
Assertiveness and Diplomacy
Adaptability
Indicate progress, or lack of
Listen to others
Make all members feel valued
Refocus discussion that has wandered off the point
Conclude one point and lead into the next
Highlight important points
Assist the secretary if necessary
Clarify any misunderstanding
Encourage new faces onto committee
Allow others to take responsibility

How long should each meeting last why?
For only as long as is necessary to achieve its purpose.

How can active participation in meetings be encouraged?
Encourage active participation by thanking people when they contribute, following through on ideas and suggestions, making sure that contributions are acknowledged. Agendas, distributed prior to the meeting, help people prepare.

Ask people to formally contribute information related to their ideas, roles or needs.

Explain what the role of the chair is.
The Chair is responsible for leadership and efficient organisation of the meeting. The Chair should facilitate the effective contribution of all directors and promote constructive and respectful relations between board members and between board and management. The chairperson should pace the meeting, ensuring it runs to time. If the planning has been properly executed, this should not prove to be a problem. At the end of a meeting, the chairperson should remind members what they have achieved and thank them for their contributions. Finally, the time and date of the next meeting should be arranged.

Why are minutes necessary and how should they be recorded? Why is it important to brief the minute taker before the meeting? Not all meetings must have documented minutes. In most cases, meeting minutes are necessary so that those who are unable to attend or who are interested stakeholders (this includes shareholders) can be informed of meeting processes and outcomes. They also enable people to look back on actionable items to discover who is responsible for completion of tasks and what timeframes were allocated to tasks. If there is a dispute about processes, responsibility or timeframes, the minutes act as a record of what was agreed upon.

Some types of meetings must be properly documented (minuted). These include, for instance, board meetings, disciplinary meetings/ hearings, health and safety committee meetings etc. Stakeholders must be supplied with minutes.

If the minute taker knows what he/she has to do before the meeting starts they are less likely to make mistakes, have to rewrite the minutes and are more likely to ensure that the critical points are recorded.

Describe the process you use to check the accuracy of meeting notes. How do you ensure the content meets organisational standards? Minutes and meeting notes need to be reviewed and, if necessary, transcribed as soon as possible after the meeting. Obviously if the minutes have been recorded on a laptop this is unnecessary to some degree, although they must still be reviewed for accuracy and grammatical correctness.

Make sure your minute-taker is aware of the procedures for attending to the minutes while the memory of events is still clear in their mind and submits them as soon as possible after the meeting. Occasionally, they may need to obtain further information from you for clarity or may need to check the spelling of a name before the draft is completed.

They also need to know when the minutes are required to be distributed so they can factor into the time frame the time it will take to transcribe them, make any amendments, To check them before distribution and include any other material that needs to be sent with them.


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