Your instant web meeting has just significantly overrun, I mean the allotted time is now an irrelevant fact of the meeting (Want to know where we think the best place to join a meeting is?). Your team are in an engaging conversations about existing and new projects. You don’t want to put a sudden stop to what is being an effective online meeting, but at the same time you have the next meeting you need to host with a desk full of tasks with a tight deadline. At what stage does one effective instant meeting make the next meeting become ineffective. Enforcing a meeting end time and sticking to it is a must. A meeting which overruns is a meeting which has not been managed accordingly. This usually points to topics within the meeting being strung out or going off topic from the original agenda.
But that’s too late to worry about now. You have already overrun on the allotted time. It’s time to go into recovery phase. You can’t simply just conclude the web meeting you are in, but at the same time you can’t allow it to run on and on. Just simply butting in the conversation and bluntly ending the conversation is only going to leave the web meeting on a bad note, of which has been relatively constructive. Here it is, similar to getting out of the awkward conversation at the Christmas party, our four tips on how to come bring the meeting to a conclusion. But this is in the digital realm of the web meeting.
Understand where you are in the web meeting
As we have mentioned above. Check back and see where you are in the meeting. Have you surpassed a significant landmark or are you approaching a landmark which makes it easy to end the conversation. The tricky part is when you are in the middle of a topic where you attendees are engaged in.
Begin summarising the conversation
You know where you are in the conversation. You have now found the right time to interrupt the conversation. Now it’s time for you to begin summarising the conversation. Drawing on conclusive points from the conversation and delivering actionable insights moving forward. Encourage your meeting attendees to be involved with the summarising and be a part of the ending conversation. That way they won’t feel alienated and that you have simply just ended the meeting.
Schedule a time for the next web meeting
Prompting a time for the next meeting instantly reassures your meeting attendees there will be a chance within the future to continue discussions. The new meeting time will be representative of the information to be covered. You can take this chance to remind your meeting attendees about the time restrictions. In addition, reiterate to your meeting attendees to be fully prepared for the meeting and ensure topics remain relevant.
Ask your colleagues to take the web meeting offline
If all else fails and the meeting is determined to go ahead, then encouraging the meeting attendees to continue the meeting offline. That way they get the chance to continue on their discussions but you have drawn a close to your proceedings. Reaffirm the meeting attendees that it now becomes their responsibility to host and manage the meeting from there on in. However, you will still need to check back round to the meeting and take note of the outcomes and the structure moving forward. This is most probably, as the meeting host, the last resort. It removes you from any decision making process.
First and foremost, don’t allow your meetings to overrun. Retain a tight schedule over your meetings. Stick to your agendas and persist with the meeting plan. If, on the odd occasion, your meeting does overrun, then be sure to wrap up the meeting in a timely manner. Deliver your next steps and reassure your meeting attendees that there will be a chance in the near future to further discuss the topics. A meeting timer, similar to that within Drum, provide you with a time management system for your instant meetings online.