5 Strategies to Keep Up Meeting Momentum

Don’t let unreachable meeting goals deter attendee productivity

Many meetings are called with an end goal in mind. But research suggests that if the goal is too lofty, or reward too out of reach, it’s natural for the brain to lose steam and motivation, potentially encouraging you to give up on a task completely. 

In other words: When you ask too much of attendees, you could be setting them up to be unproductive.

To keep up meeting momentum and ensure attendees stay on track, start with these five steps:

1. Break up your larger meeting goal into smaller touchstones.

If one big goal is the root of a motivation drain, take off the pressure with smaller, more attainable goals. When your timeline is more feasible, enthusiasm and productivity remain high—just remember that, for planners, it likely means scheduling additional check-in meetings, too.

2. Identify attendee roles.

Even with smaller goals, if one attendee is tasked with more work than others, he or she is likely to still get overwhelmed. So, once the schedule has been set, assign attendees specific roles, divvying up the responsibilities as balanced as possible. 

3. Leverage collaboration tools.

With more check-ins and potentially longer timelines, it can be easy for attendees to silo off into their own separate tasks. To ensure that no one feels alone and overwhelmed outside of the meeting room, use a collaboration tool. Google Drive, Smartsheets, Asana—whatever the software you choose, tools that allow attendees to team up, update progress and offer feedback in real time encourage group support and, as a result, minimize the risk of burnout.

4. Reward progress.

Just because attendees haven’t hit their end goal yet doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be rewarded. Celebrating small victories can incentivize guests to complete their next task. Whether it’s a simple thank-you note, free meal or meeting swag, making attendees feel valued for their work will keep them moving forward.

5. Communicate often.

Like other business projects, meetings without proper communication are likely to go awry. To keep agendas and timelines on track, get attendees talking. Collaboration tools like those mentioned earlier might aid in that, but it’s important to have a clear, directive communications plan in place as well to make sure each team member is aligned. For instance, before check-in meetings, send out the agenda to all attendees. Then, after the meeting, send a follow-up outlining any necessary action items discussed that need to be addressed before the next touchpoint. 

When attendees are clear on their roles and next steps, they’ll have less time to worry about a mounting workload and lose focus—and more time to plan ahead to achieve their meeting purpose.

Did you hear? On Dec. 16, Meetings Imagined will transition to Marriott Bonvoy Events, a new platform for meeting inspiration, insight and know-how.