Career Control: Getting the Most from Your Meetings

Securing dedicated one to one time with your boss can be a challenge, therefore getting the most from these meetings is critical to your success and the success of your team. Maximise the time and benefit that both parties can take from these valuable face time sessions by following these five tried and tested tips;

Timing is key.

Be strategic with your calendar and meeting planning. Is your calendar awash with back to back meetings? Is there a specific time of the day when you normally need to take a break from never ending spreadsheets and month end reports? Take a moment to assess your availability and that of your boss, to plan your time together effectively. Ensure that you are sitting down at a time which works for everyone involved and when you know the other party will be able to concentrate. You will soon see an improvement the quality of your discussion and essentially the outcome of your conversation.

Be proactive.

Get ready for the cliché…if you bring a problem to the table, always come armed with a solution. Again, think strategically to understand the impact of any unexpected changes to your workflow and the knock-on effect this will have to others in your team and stakeholder group. What are the longer and short-term effects? Have these answers ready and get to grips with how you may need to evolve to compensate for such changes. This will demonstrate your ability to confidently handle critical items and further strengthen your position as a valued part of the solution.

Keep to the point.

Your meetings should consist of two things. A business update, a high-level summary of the key points on which you have been focusing on and secondly, a plan of action for the immediate future. Send all supporting documents prior to your meeting to avoid surprises and be specific with what you wish to discuss. This is your opportunity to have an uninterrupted conversation with each other and showcase your progress and thought processes. Not only will it enable you to develop your working relationship but will strengthen your bond and the trust between you as a team.

Be ambitious.

Your own personal development should be high on your priorities list and working closely with your boss means you are learning key skills in real time. This is also the time to showcase your personal ambition and progression. Don’t assume they know, be brave enough to ask for their support in a constructive and confident way. A manager can only ever be as good as their team, therefore your success is a key factor in their continuing development and that of the team and the wider business.

Positivity breeds success.

A positive attitude in your approach to work and in your meetings will strongly impact the outcome of your conversations. Work out what you need to keep yourself and your boss motivated and engaged ahead of and during your sessions. You will no doubt face some difficult situations together, so be the person that your boss looks forward to meeting and a force for positivity.

By following these five top tips you can get more from your meetings and developed a richer, more engrained relationship with your boss and with your team.

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