While it is easy for me to remember scores of boring staff meetings, when it came to be my turn to run them and I learned to do them right, I loved ‘em.
Mostly because it was far easier to mobilize the troops in one meeting versus 8 to 10 individually held conversations, and it was a golden opportunity to make collaborative decisions versus arbitrary or dictatorial ones. When the expectation was clear that we were going to end the meeting having achieved a collaborative result, staff meetings ended up to be extremely useful and productive. They actually saved time.
The time I devoted to individual one-on-one meetings could then be highly focused and personalized. One-on-one meetings are for talent and strength coaching, for individual project delegation, and especially for the Daily Five Minutes.
In my coaching practice, executives will ask me for ideas on bringing new life to their regularly scheduled meetings, and these brainstorming conversations centered on their current focus and objectives turn out to be pretty energizing for both of us: They get excited about the possibilities of what can actually occur, and I’m able to get more of the clues I need in coaching them toward leadership breakthroughs specific to their business. Fun stuff, and as leaders we can do the same thing; orchestrate the way meetings occur through-out our organizations, by coaching our junior managers how to enliven them.
Meetings are your opportunity to take advantage of having a captive audience, so just ask yourself, is that what do you?
Business meetings are like all other business processes: They have to result in something if they are to prove useful, and worth the precious time of the people sitting in the room.
How can you ensure that every single meeting you hold is productive, and everyone looks forward to them as much as you do? (Okay, as I did and as you will.) By setting yourself up for success every time. Here is a 5-Point Plan for better meetings:
Number 5. is probably the best advice I can give you. It must become part of your company culture that you only hold productive, result-targeted meetings, or not at all.
If these five points happen with every meeting you hold, there will be an entirely new level of excellence in your group-think and in your team initiatives. More will be brought to the table because the effort is well worth it and contributions are valued. Potentially explosive ideas will no longer die unspoken. Getting invited to meetings will actually be thought of as perks.
Have a meeting. Get something done. Enjoy the experience.
All three phrases do belong together.
I love meetings.
Rosa Say is the author of Managing with Aloha, Bringing Hawaii’s Universal Values to the Art of Business and the Talking Story blog. She is the founder and head coach of Say Leadership Coaching, a company dedicated to bringing nobility to the working arts of management and leadership. For more of her ideas, click to her Thursday columns in the archives; you’ll find her index in the left column of www.ManagingWithAloha.com
Rosa’s Previous Thursday Column was: Don’t Just Add; Replace. Own the 100%
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