Anyone who’s ever been in a work meeting knows that sometimes, you have no idea why you’re even there. In these cases, we often try our best to keep ourselves from falling asleep by daydreaming and making eye contact with the speaker every few minutes to avoid looking uninterested. If you find yourself in a meeting that bores you or feels like it’s not meant for you, don’t worry. You can still be productive during that time by doing the following:
1. Come to your next meeting prepared.
If laptops are banned from the meeting, you can quickly jot down thoughts about another, more pressing engagement. There are several ways you can set yourself up for success before a meeting, such as preparing an agenda, sticking to necessary topics, or brainstorming ideas on how to run an effective meeting. By doing any of these things, you increase the chances of having a successful meeting that achieves its goals.
2. Prioritize your tasks by making a to-do list, or rearranging your existing to-do list.
By making a to-do list during your morning meeting, you can increase the likelihood of completing those tasks by the end of the day. If you’re in an afternoon meeting and have already made your to-do list for the day, go through it in your mind and rearrange it if necessary. You can also check if you prioritized your tasks correctly and whether or not you can finish your list by the end of the day.
3. Make some real progress.
If laptops are allowed in the meeting, you can take the opportunity to catch up on some real work. Pretend you’re taking notes and make sure to glance up at the speaker every once in a while and nod. Additionally, situate yourself in a spot where others can’t see your computer or use a privacy screen filter to block the view of your monitor.
4. Get involved in the meeting.
If you’re finding it difficult to focus during a meeting, try to be more active and present. Bring up important points and open up discussions about them. This will help keep you focused and engaged in the meeting. Key points and brainstorming ideas for solutions will be discussed. Also, a question or point will be brought up to show others the problems from a different angle. In conclusion, let others feel your presence and how you are adding value. You may also want to read The introvert’s guide to speaking up in meetings.
This was originally published on Personal Branding Blog.