There are over 55 million meetings a day in the U.S. alone. By some estimates, you probably hate most of them. If you think your meetings are wasting your time, they probably are. Your boss probably doesn’t see this because every meeting they lead is undoubtedly the most important meeting you’ll ever experience.

When employees complain about work, one of the most common complaints is meetings—too many of them, too much time spent in them, and too little accomplished from them. They are the bane of productivity.

The cure for bad meetings is not to kill all meetings, according to Steven Rogelberg, author of The Surprising Science of Meetings. As Rogelberg points out, we need meetings to relay information, build team rapport, and problem solve. Instead, the remedy is to identify and eliminate needless meetings, while simplifying and innovating the meetings we must have. Here are seven ways to improve your standing meetings.

1) Use meeting surveys.

Every three months or so, evaluate your standing meetings. Leaders should send out a short three-question survey to get input from attendees. Rogelberg suggests asking these three questions in an anonymous survey.

  • What am I not doing so well as the meeting leader (need to stop doing)?
  • What should I start doing that I am not currently doing?
  • What am I doing well as the meeting leader (need to keep doing)?

2) Schedule odd times.

The hour meeting length has become a standard in business. Meeting schedule software sets up meetings for one hour by default. The problem is not all issues need an hour. Furthermore, the hour length doesn’t allow time to transition from one meeting to the next.

Rogelberg suggests scheduling meetings for 25 or 50 minutes (or less) to allow for transitions. You can also end meetings when the goals are met or if it doesn’t seem like you are getting anywhere.

3) Mix up your agenda.

Sometimes the only thing that changes from one meeting to the next is the date on the agenda, says Rogelberg. Another issue is that the first items on the agenda get most of the attention just because they come first, even if they are not the pressing issues.

To address these issues, consider mixing up your agenda by getting employee input, prioritizing pressing concerns, assigning time limits to agenda items, and appointing discussion leaders for different items.

4) Cut back the invite list.

Bigger isn’t better when it comes to meetings. Too many people can drag down meeting effectiveness. On the other hand, says Rogelberg, people can feel left out if they are not invited.

To solve the attendee issue, consider who is needed for a particular meeting. Sometimes you can rotate people in and out of meetings based on necessity. Another solution is having one person act as a representative for particular groups in meetings.

5) Ditch the furniture.

We are creatures of habit. People tend to sit in the same place at meetings and interact with the same people, giving rise to the same behavior.

To stimulate your meetings, consider changing your seating arrangements. Or try walking and standing meetings. Rogelberg suggests walking meetings are best for small groups of two to four people. Standing meetings can be larger but are best when they are only fifteen minutes or so.

6) Improve the mood.

Often attendees go from work to a meeting with the same mindset and mood—usually a bad one. People often walk in with low, no, or negative energy. How will that help you problem solve?

To stimulate creativity and interactivity, create separation from the meeting and regular work activities. Rogelberg suggests creating a different atmosphere by greeting people as they come in, offering snacks, and playing music. You should also consider eliminating distractions such as mobile phones, tablets, and laptops, so people can concentrate on the meeting discussion.

7) Add quiet time.

Attendees can become passive when one person is always doing the talking. Let’s face it. If we aren’t required to talk or take notes, our attention tends to drift.

One way to increase interaction is to decrease talking. Rogelberg suggests using brainwriting and silent reading. To stimulate ideas for brainwriting, use a prompt; then give people time to write down ideas. Another way to get people active is to have them read important information silently so they can process it before having a meaningful discussion.

If you think your meetings aren’t working, then it’s time to revamp. Make them more active and participatory using the seven surprising ideas above. You may find once your meetings become more dynamic, you won’t want to eliminate them at all.