Making sure a meeting is productive isn’t always easy – and it can be even more difficult with a new or unfamiliar group. However, there are a few things you can do to make sure your new team not only stays on track, but produces some truly creative and innovative ideas.
First, make sure everyone knows what you’re trying to accomplish together. Different people might have different objectives in mind coming into the meeting, so talk it over and decide what you want to achieve in the time you’ve got.
Not every meeting will require a lot of roles, but it’s important to decide on at least one role – the leader. Assess the skills of everyone in the meeting and decide who should be leading your collaboration. You may also want to designate a note-taker, a follow-up leader or even a devil’s advocate.
Make sure you’re letting everyone have their say, but don’t let the discussion continue too long once ideas have been hashed out. It’s important to embrace the ideas that are being generated, but also to come to a consensus, making the difficult decisions when they’re necessary.
Not everyone is always going to agree about the best methods of achieving the goals. Make sure everyone is heard and allow disagreements to fuel new ideas. Be willing to compromise to create something that serves everyone’s purposes.
The best way to come up with really great ideas is to go beyond what’s easy, clear and realistic, and think about what’s exciting, crazy and even scary. Let those ideas out and then see how they can be scaled into something your team can really achieve.