More often than not, when I ask leaders, “How’d your meeting go?” they look at me sheepishly and answer with something like, “I’d like to think it went well. Nobody complained.” Despite the fact that meetings are an important business process in most organizations, “nobody complained” or “we made it through the agenda” are not exactly confidence-inducing indicators of success. We can do better people! Here’s a tool that will help take your meetings from “going through the motions” to true engagement.

Many years ago I created a “Meeting Scorecard” that can be used at the conclusion of any meeting. Participants take 90 seconds to answer 10 simple questions. For each question, they indicate on a scale of 1 to 10 the extent to which they agree with each statement with 10 being “strongly agree” and 1 being “strongly disagree.”

MEETING SCORECARD

1. FOCUS: We stayed on task and on topic.
2. RESULTS: We achieved our specific objectives for the meeting.
3. INFORMATION: We had the information we needed and used it effectively.
4. RESPECT: People interacted in a way that demonstrated mutual respect.
5. TIME: We started and ended when we said we would.
6. PEOPLE: We had the right people here to achieve our objectives.
7. INCLUSION: I felt I could disagree or offer a different perspective.
8. DECISION PROCESS: Our approach to decision-making was logical and fair.
9. CLARITY: I am leaving this meeting with a clear sense of decisions made, next steps, and open issues.
10.COMMITMENT: I am leaving this meeting feeling committed to the decisions and next steps.

Once scores are compiled results are reviewed as a way to identify strengths and areas where improvements can be made. Give consideration to these ten questions before planning your next meeting to see if there are ways you can rethink and enhance your approach.

Reflect for a moment on your meetings. Which of these ten dimensions do you suspect is your team’s greatest opportunity for improvement?

Photo credit: Jonathan McPherskesen