Family meetings are a part of weekly organizing and productivity. Communicating what is coming up, preparing for activities and academics, and discussing family engagement are key reasons to be sure you host your meeting. At times the meeting gets bogged down or skipped entirely. Here are ideas on how to keep your family meeting moving forward and valuable.
Create a consistent agenda
Every meeting needs a great agenda. That is true for your family meeting. According to Psychology Today, here are some valuable topics.
- What happened last week and how did it go
- What’s happening this week and future/holiday plans
- Old stuff that needs a family decision
- New stuff that needs a family decision
- Money stuff
- Family stuff
- Taking care of our stuff
Pro tip: If your family loses interest, shorten the agenda to three topics.
Keep it short
Every meeting becomes yawn-worthy when it takes too long. You, your partner, and all your family will appreciate brevity. Know the meeting priorities, keep a high level, and use visual aids as needed for your meeting.
Pro tip: Play Beat the Clock to energize your meeting. Set the timer and keep your session ahead of schedule. Everyone will stay on track with this tip.
Add interest and fun
Just the word meeting can make this time together less fun. Shake it up with fun! Fun can mean a special dessert or a family activity that concludes the meeting.
Pro tip: Use wacky ways to add fun, including Crazy Hats or a Walk and Talk meeting. You can meet at different locations inside and outside your home.
Consistent family meetings help everyone maintain consistent communication. When you host this meeting weekly, you have more up-to-date information and better communication. Find the best time to meet and meet at that time regularly.
Pro tip: You may need to try different times of the week to meet or rotate the days of the week. The goal is to meet weekly.
Share the responsibilities of leadership with your family. You are building leadership with your children leading the meeting. One person can be a scribe to add information to the family calendar. When you share the responsibilities, kids also have more buy-in for the meeting. Your kids enjoy the fun of being in charge. One person can be the time keeper to be sure the meeting starts and ends on time.
Pro tip: Establish a pattern to share the roles between your family so everyone knows the expectations and when roles will change.
Always remember that the goal of your family meeting is to connect. No matter if you complete the agenda or have an agreement on the next family event, you are modeling and nurturing connection.