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The Glossary of Meeting Terms describes terminology and acronyms related to meetings and all the activities we do in those meetings. We've gathered this information from far and wide, so enjoy! And hey — if you have corrections or additions, please don't hesitate to contact us!

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Magic Quadrant

A meeting is a defined real-time gathering of two or more people for the purpose of achieving a common goal through conversation and interaction. Meetings have three qualities which differentiate them from other kinds of conversations:

Meetings are declared.
Someone decides that a meeting should happen with some group of people. Usually this results in someone scheduling a meeting. Meetings have a purpose.
While the purpose may not be clear to everyone in attendance, there is... read more

Meeting Backlog

Meeting Costs are a calculation of the money and resources required to prepare for and run a meeting. Costs can be calculated by assessing software costs, organizational costs (people time), meeting productivity and efficiency, or a combination of all three. See our meeting cost calculators for more information.

Meeting design is the practice of creating a plan for a specific kind of meeting that includes a draft agenda and explains how to achieve the desired meeting outcomes.

A Meeting Flow Model is a form of process documentation that highlights the main meetings used to achieve a business result. A Meeting Flow Model works by describing the specific meetings used for each situation. Like all process documentation, these models reduce ambiguity and create a common language for getting work done that, when applied properly, speeds execution.

Meeting Flow Models are composed of one or more reference documents. Each model includes:

The Meeting Flow... read more

Meeting management software helps individuals and teams plan, organize, run, and record results during meetings. Common meeting productivity features include scheduling and invitations, agenda building and distribution, note-taking during meetings, timers, action item and decision tracking, and minutes generation. Lucid Meetings is an acknowledged leader in the meeting productivity space.

Meeting Metrics are data points, collected over time, that can show trends and patterns of efficiency or efficacy in your meetings. Common metrics include the number of meetings and participants, time spent in meetings, attendance, and meeting ratings.

Meeting Minutes, or informally, notes, are the record of a meeting in written form. They typically describe the events of the meeting and may include an agenda, a list of attendees and no shows, a listing of issues and decisions made, and an action list with due dates and responsible parties. In formal meetings, the minutes become official after review and a vote at the next meeting.

A Meeting Operating System is the system used by a company or organization to ensure meetings are effective and strategically aligned to the needs of the business. A meeting operating system establishes the performance criteria, operating models, and support all employees require to achieve effective business meetings.

An organization's meeting operating system can be evaluated using the Meeting Performance...

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The Meeting Performance Maturity Model (MPMM) provides a framework for understanding how well an organization’s meeting operating system performs and the degree to which an organization optimizes meetings to achieve their specified purpose. Groups operate at one of five levels of meeting performance maturity.

Level 1: Individual Almost no repeatable meeting process. Meetings are poorly... read more

There are two meeting technologies commonly referred to as meeting polls.

A meeting scheduling tool that allows meeting organizers to ask attendees which days and times they are available to meet. A question posed to attendees during a meeting designed to increase engagement. Everyone answers at the same time, often using mobile polling applications or poll features built into web conferencing software.

The meeting's purpose is a statement explaining why the group needs to meet, and why meeting would work better than chat or email in this situation. The meeting purpose should provide a clear line of sight to an end result in a meeting, preferably something that can be documented.

A meeting's structure describes how the meeting is planned and organized. Every meeting has a structure. When a meeting leader works to create the structure for the meeting, they consider:

When and where to hold the meeting Who to invite and what each person will do The order of topics, activities, and presentations How decisions will be made and records tracked and more...

A meeting template is a pre-formatted set of information that can serve as a starting point for a specific type of meeting. The template may include (but is not limited to) a detailed agenda, facilitation and preparation instructions, dial-in or web connection details, and related documents or presentations. Example: The Essential Project Kickoff Meeting Template

Mind Mapping is a visual way to represent a central idea and related themes. The central idea is written in the center, and related ideas are placed surrounding the central idea with lines connecting them, like branches coming from a central trunk. Mind maps can be created on paper, a whiteboard, or by using mind mapping software. Mind maps have several uses in meetings.

Visual note taking: where the main topic of the meeting sits in the middle, and the main points of the discussion are... read more

The phrase "let's put the moose on the table" refers to an uncomfortable topic that needs to be discussed but that everyone is avoiding.

This origin story says that the phrase originated in the 1980s and was inspired by a real event where a baby moose had died under a banquet table, stinking up the meeting space. No one at the meeting mentioned the obvious awful smell.

A motion is a formal proposal put to a group for a decision by vote in a meeting. Meetings that use Robert's Rules of Order or another parliamentary process make official decisions using motions. The outcome of a motion gets recorded as an official decision in the meeting minutes. When a motion is proposed, participants will typically vote Yes, No, or Abstain. The rules for working with motions and counting votes depend on the group and will usually be documented in the group's operating...

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Multitasking is the practice of dividing attention between multiple activities at the same time. In a meeting context, this can be a problem as participants may check their email or prepare a presentation and not fully pay attention to critical parts of the meeting.

Multivoting is a technique used to take a long list of possible solutions and either narrow it to a smaller list by priority or reduce it to a final selection. Each person in the group gets a set number of votes, and ranks the options they prefer in order from most preferred (the high) to least preferred (the low). When all votes are cast, the votes for each option are tallied and will either reveal a clear winner or provide information for further discussion.

Mute mapping is an affinity diagramming approach designed to encourage equal participation and reduce bias. Mute mapping follows brainstorming. When all the ideas have been added, the team works to organize the ideas into clusters of related ideas without speaking. The entire process must be completed in total silence. The groups (or clusters) are considered complete once every participant stops moving ideas around and signals their satisfaction with the groupings.