How to Manage Meetings in Large Groups

Meetings are usually held within a room of no more than 15 people. In fact, Apple has said that one key in having a successful meeting is to only have about 10 people who are directly involved with the assembly’s goal. This will make interaction easier and everyone can have a chance to give meaningful comments and solutions.

However, once in a while, a business has to organize huge meetings. It may be rowdier and more difficult to manage, but it’s not entirely impossible to do. If you are in a situation where you have to keep a large group together and organize a meeting, you can keep the following tips in mind.

  1. Plan and Make Schedules

Large-group meetings would require a large room. You have to search for an appropriate venue weeks before the actual assembly. Also, you have to confirm the time with the attendees to ensure that they will all be there. To do this more effectively, you can make use of a meeting scheduling software.

Aside from the venue and time, you also have to fully prepare the meeting’s objectives and make sure that everyone is well-informed about it. You don’t want many people blindedly grasping around the assembly without clear knowledge of its aims.

  1. Assign Facilitators

Facilitators are assigned to get the best contribution from each participant and move the discussion towards the assembly’s aims. So before you start the meeting, assign some facilitators and orient them on what they are expected to do. Some of their task will include keeping the energy level high, making sure that attendees are interested in the discussion, and getting responses from them when there’s a need to. They are basically tasked to keep everything under control.

  1. Establish Ground Rules

Aside from seeking help from facilitators, it will also help if you set clear ground rules before you start. That way, you will avoid any unnecessary discussions and misbehaviors during the length of the meeting; both of which is common in large group assemblies. You will find that you can save a lot of time if you do this.

  1. Assign Action Items

Since meetings are held to reach an end goal, make sure that the attendees fully understand the decisions made during the discussion. Also, assign everyone an action item which they have agreed upon. Without action items, you can’t fully say that you have addressed your meeting’s objective. Assigning them with tasks will minimize confusion and misunderstanding that sometimes follow a meeting.

  1. Document Meeting Minutes

To make action items assigned to each individual official, it will be better if you have a documentation or summary of everything you have agreed upon. Later on, when there’s conflict on who’s assigned what, you can easily turn to the document for confirmation.

  1. Evaluate the Meeting

Finally, it will be good if you make an evaluation on how the meeting went. Did it progress well? Did all attendees leave with clear understanding on what their next actions will be? Did it meet your goals? These, along with a few other questions, will determine just how successful you are in organizing a large-group meeting.