For most people a business meeting is an interruption and waste of time. This is because meetings are usually disorganized with poor structure, management and preparation. Below will explain four ways to ensure that you can contribute to a successful meeting.


Benjamin Franklin famously said, “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail” and his words of wisdom ring true today. Oftentimes meetings will take place without clear direction or purpose. Every meeting should start with the team leader explaining the purpose of the meeting, the expected outcomes and then follow up with previous issues and solutions. A meeting agenda is a formal document that guides the meeting and provides structure.

Team members can contribute to the meeting by following along and using the agenda to take notes. If the agenda was previously distributed, team members should first review it and prepare questions or comments for discussion.


Meetings are only as effective as the person who leads them. If the team leader is silent and allows team members to rant about the broken water cooler or ramble about last night’s awesome game, then the meeting will be a failure. The leaders of the meeting decides where the location will be for the meeting and has the main responsibility of content during the meeting. A good location for large business meeting are places like Noahs Event Venues as they can accommodate large groups of people.

Depending on the type of meeting team members will need to contribute helpful suggestions or they should keep their opinions to themselves. Team members can contribute to a successful meeting by speaking in a timely manner and keeping on topic. It’s helpful to avoid discussing office politics, issues that cannot be resolved or personal matters. Finally, show respect to the presenter by showing up on time. Many meetings start and finish weak because people continually show up, often interrupt or leave to answer their phone.


Meetings are a time to report problems, make suggestions and decide who fixes them. Most people commonly mistake meetings as a time for debate and brainstorming. For example, in a large meeting, the only person who needs to worry about maintenance problems is the maintenance supervisor. The meeting is not the place to discuss which repair option is best or who should be involved.

Team members can contribute by proactively volunteering to take on problems that they are capable of solving. They should focus on keeping the meeting on track so they can meet with others one on one to discuss their assigned problems or tasks.

Action List

Any meeting that concludes without a concise action list is a waste of time. Without it, meetings are simply an optimistic get together where members make suggestions or complaints without any real action being taken. There needs to be a detailed action list of the problem, person responsible for a solution with an expected completion date.

Team members should finish their assigned tasks before the next meeting and report their results to the team leader. This way, the team leader can quickly discuss the results at the beginning of the meeting and then move on to new items. Otherwise, each meeting is a repeat of “who was supposed to do that?”


By handing out a well formatted agenda, team members will be prepared to follow the team leader and comply with the meeting structure. Team members need to be punctual, stay on topic and volunteer to take on assignments. At the end of the meeting, an action list will clearly detail who is doing what, when and how.

Author's Bio: 

Meghan Belnap is a freelance writer who enjoys spending time with her family. She also enjoys being in the outdoors and exploring new opportunities whenever they arise. Meghan also enjoys researching new topics that help to expand her horizons. You can often find her buried in a good book or out looking for an adventure.