Business Meetings Oral Communication
What is a Business Meeting A business meeting is any focused conversation that has a specific agenda; usually, but not always, scheduled in advance.
Features of a Meeting • Meetings have been employed as a means of resolving a particular problem. • Meetings enable people to make suggestions, voice criticisms and express opinions. • The meeting is also a potential source of communication failure or break down.
Different Types of Meeting • Statutory Meetings are an assembly of persons meeting in accordance with legally defined rules and procedures to discharge business as required as law.
Executive Meetings • An assembly of people with common interests arriving at decisions and instituting actions through the process of an exchange of relevant views and information which leads to an agreement favoured by the majority of those present and subsequently supported by all.
Briefing • An assembly of people in a ‘reporting to’ position within an organizational hierarchy who are summoned to receive, accept and comply with the requirements of formulated decisions or to retain information for use relayed to them by a person in authority over them.
Advisory Meeting • An assembly of people meeting to formulate advice, suggestions or proposals for submission to a higher executive body for ratification.
Managerial Meeting • Many informal meetings occur ( some arising spontaneously) between a manager and his subordinates or counterparts to exchange opinions,, give advice or supply information as part of the managerial decision making process.
Task force, working party, quality circle • In this meeting people are brought together with varying responsibilities and from different departments to pursue a particular task or to resolve a specific problem.
Brain Storming, buzz groups • An informal assembly of people who aim to generate ideas, suggestions or approaches to organizational activities from an unrestricted interchange of views, opinions and attitudes.
Beginning the Meeting • Identify the goals of a meeting. • Provide necessary background information. • Show how the group can help. • Preview the Meeting. • Identify the Constraints.
Conducting Business • Parliamentary Procedure is a set of rules that governs the way groups conduct business and make decisions in meetings. This approach can keep discussions clear and efficient while safeguarding the rights of everyone involved in deliberations.
When to use Parliamentary Procedure • When a group’s decisions will be of interest to an external audience. • When haste may obscure critical thinking. • When emotions are likely to be strong.
Order of Business • Under the rules of parliamentary procedure, the agenda provides a plan to handle business in a logical manner, The standard meeting agenda has the following parts: • Reading of the minutes.
Order of Business • Reports. • Unfinished Business. • New Business.
Motions • When a member wants the group to deliberate, he or she introduces a motion: a specific proposal for action. • Good motions address a single issue in a brief, clear way. Once introduced, a motion must be seconded by someone other than its sponsor.
Have members take turns. • Use questions. There are four ways in which questions can balance the contributions of members.
Overhead questions are directed toward the group as a whole, and anyone is free to answer. • Direct questions are aimed at a particular individual, who is addressed by name.
Reverse questions occur when a member asks the leader a question and the leader refers the question back to the person who originally phrased it. This works well when the leader senses that a member really wants to make a statement but is unwilling to do so directly.
Relay questions occur when the leader refers a question asked by one member to the entire group. • This type of questioning is useful when the leader wants to avoid disclosing his or her opinion for fear of inhibiting or influencing the group.
Keeping Discussions on Track • Remind the group of Time pressures. • Summarize and Redirect the discussion • Use relevant Challenges • Promise to deal with good ideas later.
Keeping a Positive Tone • Ask questions and paraphrase to clarify understanding. • Enhance the value of members’ comments. • Pay attention to cultural factors.
When to close the Meeting • There are three times when a meeting should be closed. • When the schedule closing time has arrived. • When the group lacks resources to continue. • When the agenda has been covered.
How to Conclude a Meeting • A good conclusion has three parts. • Signal when time is almost up. • Summarize the meeting’s accomplishments and future actions. • Thank the group.
Following Up the Meeting • Build an agenda for the next meeting. • Follow up on other members. • Take care of your own assignments.
The End. Next week: Conferences