Revamp Your Workplace Meetings: Three Proven Strategies for Maximum Productivity

Three powerful strategies to transform your workplace meetings from unproductive to highly effective.
Rob Mark
10 mins

Productive meetings are essential to ensure that teams make decisions, collaborate effectively and make progress on their projects.

Unfortunately, most professionals consider meetings as a necessary evil that’s usually time-consuming, inefficient, and ineffective.

We don’t buy into that here at Briefmatic. We’re on a journey to build the world’s best productivity tool and we don’t have time for useless meetings. Here’s a summary of the three strategies we use that are guaranteed to make your meetings more productive.

Reduce the number of meetings

Typically the best meeting is the one you don’t have so a great way to make meetings more productive is to have fewer of them. Regular check-ins and status meetings can quickly become routine and unproductive, leaving team members feeling frustrated and unmotivated.

To reduce the number of meetings you first need to start utilising asynchronous communication channels such as email, instant messaging or collaborative work tools to exchange information and ideas, ask questions, provide insights and share feedback, on their own schedule, rather than in regular, mindless catch ups.

Often meetings are scheduled purely to facilitate the sharing and discussion of information when in reality the more efficient and effective way to achieve that outcome is to use digital tools, such as shared google docs to communicate asynchronously.

Standardise the meeting type and format

If you must have a meeting, then before you can optimise them, you need to standardise them. The first step in this process is to standardise the types of meetings used across the whole company. Standardising and documenting the preferred meeting formats will ensure everyone knows what to expect, and meetings can be streamlined, making them more efficient. Standardised meetings also reduce the time spent on logistics, allowing team members to focus on the content and discussion.

In almost every organisation the following 3 meeting format model will suffice;

  1. Discussion meeting — this meeting is to discuss questions or comments raised (but unresolved) in a discussion document. This meeting is to crystalize concepts and gain general buy in or support. Great for project or operational meetings.
  2. Information sharing — this meeting is to inform a wider group of the key updates from a more detailed information pack. Great for strategy or directional or behavioural meetings.
  3. Decision making — this meeting is to finalise a decision once all the earlier discussion points have been resolved. Great for budget approval, business plan changes, marketing campaign approvals.

The second step in standardising your meetings is to ensure the following (or similar) ways of working are followed regardless of the meeting format.

  1. No agenda, no attenda — Develop a standardised template or agenda that sets out the key items to be discussed i.e. meeting objective, discussion points, time allocation for each topic, and any necessary documents or resources. The agenda must be shared in advance of the meeting.
  2. Meeting type — The type of meeting (see above) should be stated clearly in the agenda and the subject heading for the meeting appointment.
  3. Meeting participation — everyone not required to achieve the outcomes linked to the meeting type is marked as optional that way everyone knows that if they are optional they can decline the meeting without impacting your ability to move forward.
  4. Pre Reading — writing things down forces you to think and provides a platform for collaboration. The collaboration enriches the thinking, increases engagement and improves the quality of the decision making. Plus it means you get to focus on the key points and meeting outcomes rather than bringing people up to speed. Pre reading must be shared two days prior to the meeting. If it isnt, attendance is optional.

The third and final step in standardising your meetings is to document the meeting “ways of working” and then sharing them with your team (or the whole company).

Optimise your meetings

Even with fewer and standardised meetings, it’s still important to make sure that the meetings that are held are as productive as possible. Here are some strategies to optimise your meetings further.


Encourage collaboration and open discussion both during meetings and prior to any meeting through extensive use of shared documents. At Briefmatic we collaborate early and often and make heavy use of the “comments” feature available in google docs, sheets and slides to add feedback and assign items to other team members. By doing this we ensure that everyone has had the opportunity to participate and collaborate on an idea prior to any meeting. During meetings we then encourage active participation, listening, and sharing to make sure we evaluate a wide range of perspectives while increasing employee engagement.


Effective communication is essential to productive meetings. Before and during meetings, team members should be encouraged to communicate clearly and concisely, avoiding jargon or overly complex language. The beauty of sharing written documents (pre reading and agenda) is that it forces people to think and to be articulate and helps give all participants the opportunity to contribute.


Briefmatic is a productivity tool designed and built to make prioritisation easier so it’s no surprise we believe prioritisation is critical for effective meetings. Prioritisation helps keep the meeting focused on the most important items, and discussions should be directed towards achieving the meeting objective. It’s also important to be flexible and willing to adjust priorities if necessary.


Delegation is an essential part of any productive meeting. Team members should be assigned tasks, responsibilities and deliverables based on their skills and experience. Delegating effectively can help to ensure that everyone has a clear understanding of their role and can help to improve productivity.

In conclusion, productive meetings are essential for effective collaboration, decision making and progress. Reducing the number of meetings, standardising meeting format, and optimising meetings through better collaboration, communication, prioritisation and delegation are strategies that teams can use to make meetings more productive. By adopting these strategies, teams can make the most of their time, reduce frustration, and achieve better outcomes.

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