3 Steps to Closing a Meeting

At the end of a meeting, the participants can greatly benefit from a quick post meeting review with the attendees before the exit the room in order to ensure the meeting achieved what it intended. There are three steps to take at the end of every meeting; however you can alter specific components of the situation, given the purpose of the meeting. Once someone has completed the steps in person, make sure that there is a written follow up as well.
Confirm decisions and next steps. During the debrief, you should go over what was decided during the meeting, who is accountable for following through with whom, when deliverables are expected, and how it will be communicated. You should want everyone who attended the meeting to understand what was agreed upon, so there is little chance of anyone reviving the issues later. At VizQuest, this is a key step in the selling process; taking detailed notes throughout the meeting will help this step proceed more smoothly. We train
Establish communication points. If a coworker who did not attend the meeting asks what happened, someone who attended the meeting should know what to say. Successful meeting’s end by asking the group what was discussed during the meeting. While the group responds, capture the key points that were written down and briefly summarize them. Once you have arrangement on what should be communicated with the others ask everyone if there are any parts of the conversation that they wouldn’t want to be shared. Some information may be confidential. Be specific as possible here so everyone clearly understands what is off limits. Immediately after the meeting send meeting discussion points to everyone in an email. The goal of this exercise is to provide guidance on important messages they should illustrate, and what they should keep to themselves.
Collect session feedback. Especially if your group meets regularly, gather feedback on the session from the group while it’s still crisp in their minds. This is an easy way to gather information on what parts of the meeting worked well, as well as how to improve the way the meeting runs. Rather than asking a question like “any feedback?” which is quite vague and unhelpful the “roses and thorns” approach is more effective (listing a positive and negative aspect of the meeting). In order to yield more effective criticism, avoid debating the suggestions, but do ask to clarify what is being suggested. The deeper you probe into the provided suggestions, the more likely individuals are going to ask stronger and helpful questions. Ending the meeting with a positive question enables the meeting to end on a positive note.

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