Many people feel that being a chairman means opening the meeting and stopping rows. There is much more to it than that.
Opening the meeting
+ Good morning, ladies and gentlemen / colleagues.
+ If we are all here shall we start?
+ If we are all here shall we make a start?
+ If we are all here shall we get started?
+ If we are all here let’s start.
+ If we are all here let’s make a start.
+ If we are all here let’s get started.
+ If we are all here I think we should start.
+ If we are all here I think we should make a start.
+ If we are all here I think we should get started.
+ First of all I’d like to introduce two colleagues from our Mexican office.
+ First of all, let me introduce two colleagues from our Mexican office.
+ Would you like to say a few words about yourselves?
+ Right, thank you.
+ Have you all got a copy of the agenda?
+ If everyone has got a copy of the agenda, let me first explain the purpose of the meeting.
+ The objective / purpose / aim / target of this meeting is to ...
+ Now let’s look at the agenda in detail.
+ As you can see there are five main points / items.
+ I propose / suggest that we take them in the following order.
+ I think we will need about 30 minutes for point / item 1, 20 minutes for point/ item 2.
+ As we have a lot of points to get through this morning, can we agree on the ground rules? I suggest / propose following ...
Moving to the first point
+ Right. Now let’s move on to the first point
+ Right. Now let’s look at the first point.
Handing over to another person.
Right. John, over to you.
Bringing people in
We haven’t heard from you yet, John. What do you think about this proposal?
Would you like to add anything, Ann?
Anything to add, George?
Stopping people talking
+ One at a time, please!
+ We can’t all speak at once. John first, then Ann, then Max.
+ Would you mind addressing your remarks to the chair?
+ Well, thank you,Alice. I think that’s clear now. Could we have some other opinions?
+ Right, thank you, Peter. I think we’ve all got the point now. Shall we move on?
+ Okay John, thanks, Susan. I think you wanted to say something?
What to do ___________What to say
Nod head _______________Right, I see
Lean forwards ____________Okay, I understand
Study the speaker _______Um, that’s interesting
Show interest ___________Right
Maintain eye contact ______Okay
Asking for repetition or clarification
* If you didn’t hear, you can say:
(I’m) sorry. I didn’t hear what you said. Would you mind repeating it, please?
* If you didn’t understand, you can say:
(I’m) sorry. I don’t quite follow you. Could you go over that again, please?
* If you feel the speaker is being vague or imprecise, you can say:
What exactly do you mean by ...?
+ I’m afraid that’s outside the scope of this meeting.
+ We’re beginning to lose sight of the main point.
+ Keep to the point, please.
+ I think we’d better leave that subject for another meeting.
+ So what you’re saying is ...
+ In other words ...
+ So you mean ...
+ So, if I understand you correctly ...
+ To sum up then ...
+ So, to summarise what has been said so far ...
Keeping an eye on the time
+ We’re running short time. Could you please be brief?
+ There’s not much time left. Could you please be brief?
Moving to the next point
+ Right. Let’s move on to the next point.
+ John, would you like to introduce the next point?
+ Okay, move on to item 4. Who’s going to open this one?
+ Well, I think that covers everything on that point. Let’s move on.
+ I’d like to propose that ... (informal)
+ I’d like to propose the following amendment.
+ Can we take a vote on that proposal?
+ All those in favour. Right. All those against. Right, thank you.
+ So that motion has been accepted / rejected by 4 votes to 3.
+ Very well, then, we agree with some reservations / unanimously that ...
+ Well, it seems that we are broadly in agreement that ...
Indicating follow-up tasks
+ Paul, do you think you could ...?
+ John, how about preparing some figures for the next meeting?
Closing the meeting
+ Right. That just about covers everything.
+ I’d like to thank John and Paul for coming over from Nisho Iwai.
+ So, the next meeting will be on March at 10 o’clock.
+ Thanks for your participation.
+ Right, I declare the meeting closed.