Meetings, meetings, and more meetings! Don't contribute to the dread. Next time you need to gather people together to advance your project, make sure you do the following to make your meeting worthwhile:
* Make sure it's necessary. Before sending out the invite, ask yourself whether there's another way to move the project forward. Can you get input via e-mail? Can you gather a sub-group to solve the current issue?
* Be clear about the objective. State the purpose of the meeting in the invite and again at the beginning of the meeting. Be sure to explain how the meeting will advance the overall project goals.
* Focus. Just because you have an hour scheduled, don't take it. Keep the discussion centered and avoid unnecessary side conversations.
Source: adapted from "Guide to Project Management."