How to Behave in Meetings
Keeping appropriate professional behavior at work is a must because that is a place where you get paid. While very few people have natural confidence and a professional attitude, the “code” of behavior is definitely something that can be learned and trained. In this article, we will try to cover some simple and easy tips and tricks on how to run a successful meeting and leave the best possible impression.
Appearance does matter. First impressions are really important and what people notice first is the way others are dressed as well as their manners. When you have a meeting scheduled, try to keep a professional look but also dress to feel comfortable. If the clothes do not fit your style, then others might laugh behind your back so keep your professional look but also make it fit your usual style.
Be punctual, don’t be late. You may appear very unprofessional to your associates and bosses, or even employees providing you are a manager if you are constantly late for meetings. Try to arrive a couple of minutes earlier, sit and prepare. Having a small conversation with others before the meeting can’t hurt in setting the mood for the actual meeting. It will give you an opportunity to show others how amazing your personality can be.
Avoid phone calls, emails and text messages. With advancement of technology, a lot of people have become addicted to various gadgets and devices. What frequently irritates people, especially in meetings, is when someone keeps texting during the meeting, which clearly shows that he is not focused on the meeting topic and would rather be somewhere else. Unless you are expecting an urgent call or a text message, then always try to keep your cell phone silent during meetings.
Let others speak and listen to them. If you are the only one who talks, people might find that rude. Even if you are a boss, let others express their opinion as well. While they are speaking try to stay focused, look at them but don’t stare. Even if that specific topic is not in any way related to your job or even department, people will still appreciate if you listen to them. Do not interrupt others unless completely necessary.
Don’t pretend you know everything. Overconfidence may be considered by some people as plain bragging. There is no person in the world that knows everything. Even the most successful entrepreneurs in the world had their ups and downs in their career and their share in bad decision making. So don’t be afraid to speak up or to say that you do not agree with someone, but always state your arguments and stay open minded to be convinced otherwise if proper arguments are presented to you.
Do not get too excited about some ideas – others may consider that as a sign of immaturity. Keep always a calm face with a hint of a smile and never get too emotional. Even if you are excited about some new product or results, try to stay calm. There might always be some aspects you are not aware of at the first glance. Showing anger or frustration may also be taken as a sign of weakness.
When talking business always bring up the facts. Don’t elaborate too long unless being asked, especially if people from other departments are present. Try to explain things in the shortest possible way, yet give your best to present all the facts needed. It will show others that you are on top of your work. Be prepared for some questions, but don’t rush with answers. Make sure you are providing accurate answers to questions. Always be prepared.