Personal Meeting Strategies



Joe C. Keshi, OON

Ambassador Joe C. Keshi, OON, is the Vice Chairman of the Board of United Bank for Africa Plc. A distinguished career diplomat, he has also served, amongst many other key roles, as Permanent Secretary, Cabinet Secretariat,  responsible for the meetings of the Federal Executive Council, presided over by the President of the Federal Republic Nigeria.

How to Excel at Meetings by Joe C. Keshi, OON

How to Excel at Work

I believe in holding well-structured and disciplined meetings. To achieve this, I always try to ensure the following.

First, time must be properly managed. Meetings should start and end as stated in the agenda. The meeting should be focused and discussions proficiently kept on track. I always discourage participants from repeating what others have said. This not only saves time, but encourages and helps to generate new ideas and solutions to issues under discussion. It is equally a measure of respect for others at the meeting as it oers everyone the opportunity to contribute to the discussion.

Second, set the clear tone of the meeting from the outset and lay down the ground rules, which begins with agreeing on the agenda and keeping to the agenda.

Third, intermittently summarize the discussions and decisions. This ensures that there is a general agreement and no misunderstanding as to what was agreed upon, including the delegation of specific time-bound tasks. This is also helpful to the secretary of the meeting or anyone tasked with taking meeting notes.