Your meeting purpose provides clarity on your meeting attendees. Even though you may want to invite everyone to every meeting, this may not help you accomplish your meeting purpose and may not be the best investment of time from your coalition members. Think carefully about who needs to be involved in order to accomplish the meeting purpose and conduct effective meetings. Join me this week as I provide three considerations as you determine who needs to attend the meeting.
Who is most interested in the meeting purpose?
When you know your coalition members and their interests, you can connect the members with meetings that would be a good fit for their interest. When you are able to make this linkage, everyone benefits. Continue to listen closely to your members and find a way to organize the information so that you can readily connect to that information when you are planning a meeting. If you have a workgroup, team or network, you may have a standing “list” of people who are currently interested but there may be others who are also interested who you may not know. Since it can be difficult to maintain relationships with all of your coalition members, lean on your leaders and other members to help you connect to others who may also be interested.
Who is most impacted by the meeting purpose?
Those who are interested in our meeting purpose are likely impacted by the meeting purpose. In addition, there may be others (e.g. community members) who may be impacted by the meeting purpose but may not have had an opportunity to engage. Consider those who are actively participating as well as those who may not yet be participating. Once again, this is an opportunity to rely on your coalition leaders and members to help you consider those who may not be engaged who may be impacted by your meeting purpose. They can also help you recruit and invite new people to participate.
Who has capacity to participate in the meeting purpose?
While you may have many coalition members who are interested and impacted by the meeting purpose, one of the important considerations of an effective meeting is to include those who have capacity to participate. Even though someone may be very interested in your meeting purpose, she may not have capacity to attend or to engage in the meeting action items and follow-up. In order to create momentum, energy and engagement in your meetings, you want to be intentional about including those who have capacity to participate in the meeting purpose and the meeting follow-up. When you are identifying leaders for your workgroups, teams or networks, consider recruiting those who have interest, are impacted and have capacity.
What about you? As you consider your next meeting, who has interest, is impacted and/or has capacity to attend based on the meeting purpose?
If you would like more resources on conducting effective coalition meetings, check out my Effective Meeting Checklist!