You know those subjects that are considered “universal knowledge”? You are expected to know everything about them but not many people want to discuss them? Well, meeting etiquette is one of them. When you’re invited to a meeting, you are expected to follow certain guidelines in order for the meeting to run effectively and efficiently. We’re ready to discuss what these meeting expectations are and if you’re on an attendee list, you will be aware of the etiquette rules that you should follow.
Many of the meetings require the organizer to plan ahead – ordering coffee, snacks, or booking a space that has enough seating for everyone. Imagine, how dissatisfied you would feel if you were attending an hour-long meeting and you had to stand the entire time because there were not enough seats in the room. Well, in many cases, these inconveniences happen because the organizers are not aware of the exact number of people that are attending. Providing the organizer with RSVP benefits both sites – you look organized with your time and the meeting leader can plan accordingly to provide appropriate accommodations.
One of the most critical rules of meeting etiquette is punctuality. Showing up to a meeting late will be perceived as a disrespectful act and it often delays the meeting from starting. People who did everything to show up on-time will remember that you came in 10 minutes late and that is not a great impression.
Your cellphones should be, at least, on silent-mode if not off. Having your phone ringing or vibrating will interrupt the attendees regardless if they say they don’t mind. Additionally, don’t ever respond to emails or engage with your phone, your attention should be focused on the discussion and your opportunities to contribute to the topic.
Very often, body language communicates more than words; therefore, slouching in your chair at the meeting can communicate to other people that you’re not interested or appreciative of the discussion. On the other hand, sitting up straight and paying attention will lead other attendees to perceive you as professional and confident.
One of the biggest meeting etiquette rules that you must not break is cleaning up after yourself. It may not seem like a big deal but after you have a pastry with a coffee, leaving your remainders on the table will make you look inconsiderate and careless. These are not the opinions that you want your colleagues, boss, or business partners to have of you.
Being invited to meetings will help you connect with different colleagues and share your expertise with people at the company. Hence, people will find you helpful which often leads to career advancements. By following these meeting etiquette rules, you will be considered as a pleasant and helpful addition to the meetings, rather than a person who organizers always dread putting on the “Invite” list.