If you have a meeting, hearing the voices of all attendees could be a game-changer. Of course, it depends on the meeting: if you’re delivering a state-of-the-nation talk to the company, perhaps you’re more interest in cascading information down rather than getting input.

If, however, you have selected a number of people to attend a meeting to make a decision, generate ideas, move forward with plans, or start planning something brand new, you need to make sure that everyone can and does contribute. Why? Phew! Buy-in, good ideas, commitment, avoiding sabotage, relationship-building, and so much more.

But how?

One way is plan the meeting to make sure that you are crystal clear on the purpose. From there, you can ensure that you have the right people in the room. And when you have them in the room—virtual or otherwise—you can start the meeting by explaining why each person has been invited, why their contribution is important, and stating that you would like to hear everyone’s voice.

Simple, but effective. If you set the scene well, you have a better chance of success.