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Meeting participation exercise

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You can use this exercise to start useful conversations about meeting productivity and our behavior's impact in meetings.

Published in: Leadership & Management
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Meeting participation exercise

  1. 1. Meeting Participation Using appropriate interpersonal styles and methods to help reach a meeting’s goals while considering the needs and potential contributions of others. Key Actions • Clarifies the current situation—Seeks, gives, and summarizes information; checks for understanding. • Develops others’ and own ideas—Seeks, makes, and develops suggestions; makes procedural suggestions. • Facilitates agreement—Tries to build agreement on outcomes and actions. • Uses Key Principles—Establishes good interpersonal relationships by helping people feel valued, appreciated, and included in discussions (enhances self-esteem, empathizes, involves, discloses, supports). Questions 1. Describe a meeting in which you had something you wanted to share but didn’t. What prevented you from contributing? 2. Tell me about a meeting in which you took a stand on an unpopular issue. What did you say to promote agreement for the issue? 3. Tell me about a time when you supported someone else’s ideas in a meeting. How did you support them? What happened? 4. Tell me about a meeting you attended in which you suggested a new idea. What approach did you use to gain acceptance of your idea? Were you successful? How did you know? 5. Tell me about a meeting in which someone suggested a new idea that affected your work. How did you react? 6. Tell me about a meeting in which you and other participants had to agree on specific action items. Did everyone reach agreement? What was your role? 7. We’ve all been in meetings when our manager/supervisor/team leader said something we disagreed with. Tell me about a time when this happened to you. What did you do? 8. Tell me about the most productive meeting you’ve been in. What was your role? 9. Tell me about a recent unproductive meeting you attended. Why was it so unproductive? What was your role? 10. Sometimes when meeting with an important internal/external customer, we don’t understand everything that’s being discussed. Tell me about a time when this happened to you. What did you do? 11. Tell me about a meeting in which your role was to provide technical expertise. How did you ensure that everyone understood what you said?
  2. 2. Questions for people with little work experience 12. Have you ever been in a (class, fraternity/sorority, peer group, student/faculty, etc.) meeting in which you had something to share but didn’t? What prevented you from contributing? 13. Have you ever been involved in a (class, fraternity/sorority, peer group, student/faculty, etc.) meeting in which you took a stand on an unpopular issue? What did you say to promote agreement? 14. Tell me about a (class, fraternity/sorority, peer group, student/faculty, etc.) meeting in which you suggested a new idea. What did you say to gain acceptance of your idea? Were you successful? How did you know? 15. Were you ever in a meeting with a professor who said something you disagreed with? What did you do or say?

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