Every meeting should have a Chair, a Timekeeper and Participants.
The Chair classifies the meeting type upon invitation to the meeting, announces it at the start of the meeting, and guides the agenda. The Chair also closes discussion five minutes before the end of the meeting to ensure that people can get to their next one, and take care of any other responsibilities along the way.
The Timekeeper role is rather self-explanatory. Timekeepers make sure everyone stays on schedule and that all points in the agenda are covered. They prevent the Chair and the Participants from lingering too long on any one point.
The Participants in a meeting are not passive observers. They need to arrive to meetings prepared to contribute and stay interested throughout the meeting. Participants may also be responsible for maintenance of what I like to call ‘The Parking Lot.’ This is a repository for all ideas that may come up during the meeting, but don’t necessarily need to be handled during it. At a later date, the issues stored in the Parking Lot are addressed.
For more information on this topic, check out: Leadership at 100MPH.