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Visual Notes: Unlocking Best Practices for Productive Meetings

Meetings play a vital role in organizations, but all too often, they can be unproductive, uninspiring, and leave participants feeling overwhelmed. However, there’s a powerful tool that can transform the way we approach meetings and improve our understanding of best practices: visual notes. How can visual notes enhance our comprehension of meeting preparation, active participation, and introduce useful meeting tools?

Here you can find an example of visual notes prepared for a client, who wanted to address four crucial parts corresponding to meetings, in order to improve meetings productiveness and efficiency.

  1. Meeting Preparation: Effective preparation sets the foundation for successful meetings. To be sure that the meeting is needed and well prepared, follow these points:
    • Reconsider, if you really want a meeting? You might try to solve the issue by sending infos, presentation, email, calling somebody or even recording a loom video.
    • Set clear goal and agenda for the meeting
    • Choose the participants wisely: not too many, one member from each team, do not go over 8 people and be sure all participants know their role and expectations
    • Ask participants to confirm the meeting, set a clear deadline for the confirmation
  2. During the Meeting: Pay attention how the meeting is conducted to get the best of it
    • Time: use shorter time slots and watch the time,
    • Start on time, turn the camera on, address people clearly so that they know they are being asked, introduce all participants
    • Topics: present the agenda of the meeting and stick to it! If new topics arise just put the on the schedule for a new meeting.
    • Recap the meeting: send a recap note, distribute the tasks, evaluate: have you reached the meeting goal?
  3. Participation: Engage participants and enhance their understanding of the discussion.
    • Set rules for the meeting: closed laptops, alerts off, no responding to messages during the meeting
    • Be respectful: do not interrupt the others, talk one after another, use no jargon, speak clearly so that all unterstand what you’re saying
    • Equal chances: everyone can express their opinion but also has the right to pass on the discussion
  4. Useful Meeting Tools:
    • the Goal Model – set Goal, desired Outcomes, Agenda and Timebox for the meeting
    • Meeting pizza rule of 25/50 – shorten each meeting by 5 or 10 minutes to have a decent break for offline activities
    • the Law of Two Feet – if you feel you do not contribute to the discussion it’s ok to leave it
    • On the move – how about a standing meeting or a walk? This format encourages efficiency, brevity, and increased engagement.

Visual notes offer a transformative approach to understanding and implementing best practices for productive meetings. By leveraging visual representations during the meeting preparation phase, actively participating with visual summaries, and utilizing meeting tools like the pizza meeting, standing meeting, rule of two feet, and the GOAT model, meetings can become more engaging, efficient, and fruitful. Embrace the power of visual notes to revolutionize your meeting experiences and unleash the potential of effective collaboration.

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