Quickly and Simply Transform All Meetings

Bored child

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If you could only get back the time you gave to boring, ineffective, useless meetings!

Meetings give the impression something’s getting done when usually it isn’t.

There’s too much talking in meeting
because people aren’t focused on doing.

One rule transforms every meeting from ineffective to effective.

Rule one:

Mercilessly cut everything that isn’t connected to action.

Three functions of rule one:

Every agenda item must do at least one of three things:

  1. Enhance efficiency – improve action.
  2. Generate assignments – create action.
  3. Stop ineffectiveness and/or inefficiency – prevent action.

Guidelines for rule one:

  1. All “information-giving” must clearly inform action. Always explain the connection to doing.
  2. Determine options for action, when you’re problem solving and innovating, then give assignments.
  3. Don’t spend so much time improving things you haven’t done yet. Do something; improve as you go.
  4. Explore what isn’t working and improve it or end it. Organizations that don’t end ineffectiveness and inefficiency eventually become paralyzed beasts.

General guidelines:

  1. Shorten the length of time one person is allowed to talk.
  2. All presentations must be clearly relevant to action. If it’s not relevant to action, it’s irrelevant.
  3. Create short slots of time for agenda items. “We have ten minutes to find three potential improvements for employee training,” for example.
  4. Before ending meetings, always ask, “Who has assignments and what are they? What’s the timeline.?”

One exception to rule one:

Take a few minutes to share what’s going on in life outside work. Give people time to connect if you expect them to connect. Use a portion of your meeting to strengthening relationships within the team.

What would transform the meetings you attend or lead?

keynotes and workshops