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Running a Meeting

This stage is where the actual meeting takes place, and meeting management software automates the following tasks, assisting meeting professionals to run a more effective meeting.

Taking Attendance

Knowing who is present at the meeting is important for several reasons. If decisions need to be made and a particular decision maker is not able to attend, this may cause the meeting to be postponed. Further, if discussions need to be documented, it is important to have the influential attendees present so that their comments can be tracked in the meeting minutes’ document. Using meeting management software allows the host to quickly take attendance prior to starting the meeting or invite new attendees as needed. If attendees are logging in virtually for an online meeting, the system will track their attendance automatically.

Discussing the Agenda Topics

The agenda contains the items that need to be discussed during the meeting. Having a static meeting agenda made in MS Word, and passed out to the attendees lacks the allure of an interactive experience. Users tend to jump around at their discretion, reading topics that are important to them and tend to lose focus on the meeting as a whole. Meeting management software helps the host to keep the attendees focused on the topic being discussed.

As a topic is covered, the users are able to see the topics that are coming up, as well as the topic that have been already been covered. This helps the audience to stay on track with where they are during the meeting. Having the ability to launch the file attachment made during the creation of the agenda helps host to keep the meeting moving forward while detailing the areas of the agenda that require further information.

Taking Meeting Minutes

Meeting minutes are the written record of the discussions, decisions and tasks that take place during a meeting. The primary reason for having these documents is to review and take action on decisions made or to continue previous meetings discussions. Meeting minutes documents typically use one or more of the following styles, Action, Discussion or Verbatim styles, and certain meeting types, like board meetings require specific elements and styles.

Meeting management software assists Note Takers to quickly and accurately document and format various meeting minutes by automating the note taking process. This adds accountability and consistency which increases the overall effectiveness of the meeting minutes.

Decision Making

The conversations that take place during meetings will often time cover various issues where decisions need to be made in order to move progress forward. This requires the attendees to recap on discussions, making sure that a valid and acceptable decision has been reached. Enforcing this process can be cumbersome, and usually the realization that a decision has not been made is not uncovered until the meeting has ended.

Meeting management software will use features such as Conclusion Statements and Meeting Tools like Voting, Pro Con and Rating. The combination of such features, coupled with an easy system for reviewing topic discussions and previewing meeting minutes, helps meeting professional to make decisions as required. There are some tools that even have varying styles of meeting minutes documents where you can activate Conclusion Style minutes for a fast recap of decisions made during the meeting.

Assigning Tasks

Most meetings will result in tasks being assigned to attendees and colleagues. There are many task management systems available, however the managing of tasks specific to an agenda item or to a discussion that took place during a meeting provides for some additional challenges. Meeting management software gives meeting professionals the ability to define, assign and distribute tasks on the fly during a meeting. Tasks can be grouped using features such as project labels and can easily be searched for within the meeting system. This helps improve accountability during and after a meeting.

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