Making The Meeting: Resources for Conducting Effective Meetings

Welcome to the Making the Meeting series. This suite of podcasts, tip sheets, checklists, and additional resources is designed to help ALA members improve their skills as meeting managers and committee chairs. Eli Mina, ALA Parliamentarian, offers guidance and advice regarding all aspects of planning, conducting, and managing effective meetings. A must-listen for all new and experienced committee chairs. For additional information on this ALA/ACRL initiative, see the article " Making the Meeting: Resources for Effective Meetings" by Lisa Romero in the June 2008 issue of C&RL News.

Click the audio podcast links to launch interviews with Eli Mina in your media player of choice. Right click and Save As to save the podcasts to your desktop to play later or transfer to your MP3 player.

Note: All linked resources are accessible to current ALA members only.

Part One - Building the Foundation for Effective Meetings
Learn how to develop a clear and compelling sense of purpose, ensure that meeting participants are effective contributors, and establish ground rules for interaction during the meeting. The tip sheet outlines how to create a foundation for effective meetings to maximize committee effectiveness and productivity.

Tip Sheet 1 | Tip Sheet 1 (Spanish version) | Audio Podcast 1 (7:18)

Part Two - Planning and Agenda Design
Explore the steps involved in building a meaningful and productive meeting agenda in Part Two of the series. The tip sheet offers ideas and checklists for planning an effective meeting.

Tip Sheet 2 | Tip Sheet 2 (Spanish version) | Audio Podcast 2 (8:26)

Part Three - Roles of the Meeting Chair
Part Three of the series explains how to strategically manage time, people and the meeting agenda, strategies and tools for chairing meetings effectively, bringing out the best in committee members, and orchestrating productive discussions are also included.

Tip Sheet 3 | Tip Sheet 3 (Spanish version) | Audio Podcast 3 (8:27)

Part Four - Avoiding Chaotic, Adversarial & Aimless Meetings
Using a case study, Part Four analyzes approaches and techniques that can be utilized to create productive and enjoyable meetings.The tip sheet provides suggestions and strategies for maintaining (and restoring) a productive meeting environment.

Tip Sheet 4 | Tip Sheet 4 (Spanish version) | Audio Podcast 4 (7:06)

Part Five - Rules of Order and Minutes: Key Points
Part Five reviews useful tools for maintaining the appropriate structure and formality required for democratic decision-making.  It offers guidance for using parliamentary procedure and minutes to sustain and promote a meeting environment that is democratic, creative, and inclusive.

Tip Sheet 5 | Tip Sheet 5 (Spanish version) | Audio Podcast 5 (14:28)

Part Six - Answers to Your Questions
Eli Mina responds to questions from ALA member leaders on handling common meeting challenges including participation, follow-through, time management, focus, and related dilemmas.

Tip Sheet 6 | Tip Sheet 6 (Spanish version)

Committee Chair Checklist
This concise master calendar offers committee chairs guidance on scheduling, planning, and conducting the on-site meeting. Includes Information on ALA meeting requests and scheduling.

Committee Chair Checklist

Meeting Sign-in Sheet
The sample sign-in sheet may be used by committee chairs to document attendance at committee meetings.

Sign-In Sheet

List of Resources
Want to further develop your understanding and skills as a meeting manager? This extensive bibliography of books, Web sites, and videos can help.

List of Resources