Meetings are a gathering of more than one person to discuss a specific topic.
Well planned meetings have an agenda, a meeting manager who keeps the meeting on track, and a set objective.
Poorly planned meetings generally miss out on one or more of those components, and as a result tend to waste the time of the attendees.
Because of the increasing collaboration required in a increasingly complex business environment, meetings are not going away anytime soon. In fact, with teleconferencing, web-hosted meeting software, and videoconferencing, meetings are actually increasing. And the audience is becoming more global.
Some good meeting practices to follow include:
Schedule the meeting precisely to the agenda. If you think it will take 37 minutes, don’t schedule an hour.
Start meetings at 7 minutes past the hour. It will keep people who were in hour-long meetings (in violation of the previous practice) from showing up late.
Always have an agenda, and give it out in advance. It will help people prepare.