This is a management tip from David De Ford.
If you constantly find yourself from being opposed by certain parties or even an individual in meetings, try to hold a meeting with these person/parties before the actual meeting. Let them know what your views on the agenda of the upcoming meeting and seek their views. Try and come up with a compromise so that the actual meeting with everyone goes smoothly.
This mainly applies to large meetings like inter departmental or inter disciplinary meetings where everyone comes with their own vested interests. And when you setup a meeting before the actual meeting, you don’t have to meet everyone from that particular department. Just invite the decision maker or his delegate of authority. In this way, you both can quickly cut to the gist of the matter and when everyone attends the main meeting, they are familiar with the main points and will not bicker on the minor points. Only those points which were disagreed upon can be discussed.
This should help make meetings a little more efficient.