Meetings can serve many purposes but are not always effective. If they're badly structured they can turn out to be a waste of time, but when they're done well they can inform, encourage and engage employees, boosting productivity and clarifying goals across the whole organisation.
CIO UK looks at the top tips for running a successful IT meeting.
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November 15, 2019
2. Share an agenda
Once you know who will be holding the meeting, it is a good idea to share an agenda with other attendees. This gives people a chance to prepare and also makes them aware of what the meeting is about.
The agenda doesn’t have to be too detailed, but brief pointers of what you intend to discuss can be effective. It is even better if you have a designated facilitator or minute-taker for the meeting, who can keep track of all the points and make sure everything, is discussed as planned.
Creating an agenda will not only put you at ease but will also ensure the meeting doesn't drag on. A segmented meeting will make information easier for employees to take in.
Make sure all the relevant data is exported and converted into meaningful insights to be passed onto the whole team.
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5. Have a set goal
A CIO should have a clear reason in mind for conducting a meeting and ensure all attendees are aware of the purpose behind it.
Most meetings require input from others so setting manageable goals will let the team know what is expected of them, as well as the targets that are in place for that week, month or year.
Anschutz Entertainment Group CIO David Jones says: "We have quarterly IT service delivery meetings, where I and my management team meet with each business unit to review their IT projects and initiatives, to identify any issues or risks, and to plan for the future.
"By regularly meeting with and communicating with business senior leadership, we ensure that the IT aligns effectively with business strategy and operations."
11. Make every meeting matter
An IT meeting should have a set purpose.
A one-to-one meeting is a great way to receive instant feedback if you want to resolve an issue quickly.
Email and collaboration tools such as
Slack and Google Hangouts are useful to communicate on group projects without the need of arranging a meeting. This can help increase team collaboration, encourage ideas and ensure projects are met on time.
John Lewis CIO Paul Coby personally attends every executive committee meeting, which allows him to use his position as an IT leader to communicate change and improve digital literacy.
"I attend all executive committee meetings to allow clear and constant lines of communication with the team guiding the partnership," Coby says. "This has allowed a deeper understanding of the technology agenda with the committee, greater long-term and sustainable engagement and quicker decision-making."
19. Don’t be too corporate
Don't be too corporate/r-hol
A stuffy and over-corporate approach to a meeting will never work. You should break down the meeting by engaging with team members, the use of multimedia can help team members concentrate and not dread the next IT meeting.
Taking a more laid-back approach should result in employees joining in with debates and voicing ideas, rather than sitting silently (and possibly bored) watching a Powerpoint presentation.
Royal Society of Chemistry's Director of Technology Frank Gibson says: "I have introduced an informal monthly technology town hall meeting with an open invitation to the entire organisation.
"To foster openness and transparency I have included a guest spot for anyone from the wider team to join in the weekly technology management meeting, which works on rotation. This also acts as a training tool for the guest to see how effective meetings are run and how decisions are made, and provides insight into the role of a technology manager."