Meeting Essentials

Posted by on July 13, 2009 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

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Having recently facilitated the toughest meeting of my 15 year consulting career, I did some serious reflection on the whole meeting culture and the reasons we spend so much time in them. Heck, some of the companies I’ve worked with book meetings to discuss the next meeting!

With people being more "virtually" connected now than ever before, and with the advent of social media (e-mail is almost outdated now) surely we can have more "virtual meetings" and fewer face-to-face ones? But I know that old habits die with difficulty, so here are some thoughts on meetings and getting the most out of them.

Weekly meetings are legendary for their ineffectiveness. What makes a weekly, or regular meeting ineffective?

  • When the people are less motivated to excel after the meeting than they were before the meeting.
  • Spending time sharing information that would be more efficiently and effectively communicated via email or some other method.
  • Not following through on issues that were introduced or decided in previous sales meetings.
  • Asking for feedback from the group when the manager really wants agreement rather than feedback.
  • Having an unclear agenda.
  • Attempting to get through too much material in too little time.
  • Extending meetings beyond the scheduled end of the meeting.
  • Getting inappropriately mired in details that should be sorted out individually, or in a coaching session with an employee, or by the manager locking herself in her office for an afternoon to figure out a solution to the problem.
  • Allowing group think invade the meeting.
  • Letting the meeting stray off topic.
  • Allowing unplanned bitch sessions when most suggestions to management would be more effectively handled in a one-to-one forum rather than a group meeting.
  • Not including some element of fun or levity when appropriate.
  • Prematurely sharing news or introducing initiatives
  • Wasting peoples’ time.

But the number one problem with a weekly meetings is: Insufficient time and energy spent on the topic of the team’s core business.

Let’s make meetings about your core business again.

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