Your sitting there and no one is talking. An agenda item has been presented and then...NOTHING...silence. That is one way to kill a meeting, no participation.
This type of silence could be a sign of negative team dynamics.
There is another type of silence that could have the opposite effect on a meeting; silence that produces conversation.
An agenda item is presented, everyone glances at the leader, waiting for them to say something but there is nothing, just silence.
Silence from the leader, if done at the right time could encourage conversation.
Have you ever been in the meeting where an item is presented and the leader in the room speaks first?
That action can produce another kind of silence. Intimidation.
Often when the leader speaks first the team realizes it doesn’t matter what they say, the leader wants it done one way, theirs.
As a team leader, I want input, open communication. I must be careful, however, not to speak first, but let others have input. I do want to be a part of the conversation, and I do want there to be constructive conversations.
I wrote more about meeting rules here.
An invitation for everyone to speak creates a stronger team.