A: For in-person meetings room layout can be very important, particularly for larger meetings. One of the critical factors is the seating arrangement. A circular arrangement conveys an impression of equality amongst the participants. Having a lectern or desk in front of rows of seats confers power onto the person occupying it. To a lesser […]
A: Understanding cultural differences is the first, and probably most important, step in avoiding potential conflict. The chair will need to respect any cultural differences and have empathy for the various cultures represented.
A: Usually the best way to deal with a contentious issue is to confront the problem and not avoid it. This can be difficult and uncomfortable, and one of the main will be the feelings of those involved. So, you may need to confront risky interpersonal issues and doing this effectively is a skill most […]
A: This can be a problem, particularly if there are no agreed ground rules for the meeting. The chair is nominally the person who should run the meeting. If the chair seems unwilling and/or unable to control the meeting when a third party tries to take control, it is the responsibility of the other attendees […]
A: You need to help other participants challenge the received wisdom and support anyone who is feeling pressured to conform. Don’t forget that one of the most dangerous phrases in business is “We’ve always done things that way”. So, if you’re in a brainstorming or problem-solving meeting you should encourage freewheeling and creativity. It might […]
A: Keep each topic discussion fairly brief, around 15 minutes works well for most topics. If you find a discussion is getting bogged down, you should try summarising, seeking agreement to any decisions required, and allocating actions. In the case of more technical/specialised discussions it might be useful to form a sub-group who can resolve […]