We need to start with the outcome in mind; if meeting facilitator knows what he/she would like to accomplish then meeting would be more productive.
1. Create an agenda (and attach to it) and let it know
2. Be prepare
3. Listen to understand
4, Have an assigment to participans as a follow up
5. Stand up meetings are more productive.
Assuming that you are talking to your client who's project you are working on..
Some things that have helped me so far,
1) Revise the topics that were covered during the last meeting and revisit them again. Have we fulfilled our previous commitments ? if not , what are the challenges? This would be a good place to start and understand if your understandings about the project are correct. In most cases client's idea Vs our execution do not match due difference in understanding.
2) Have a prioritised agenda on things to be covered in current meeting.
3) Identify diversion in conversations and get back to the point.
4) Listen well, acknowledge and Don't hesitate to clarify your understanding ? either on call or by email.
5) Always document your meeting by email and get confirmation.
Last but not the least whenever you find a situation that needs appreciation, Always appreciate the other person's efforts
I hope these help,
Please don't hesitate if you have any further questions.
Create a company culture of presence in communication. We are socialized to talk "at" each other instead of "with" each other. This failure in communication can be attributed to an unconcious desire to seek control in every situation. This is rooted in fear and is not a productive means of engaging with other human beings.
Translating a message efficiently begins with a harmonious state of mind.