Conquer Meeting Madness

We’re hearing again that people are struggling to get their work done because all of their time is spent in “useless” meetings…or Meeting Madness as we call it! Meetings are supposed to be a means to success. Sadly though, they’ve become a time-suck that actually prevent people from making headway on their list of things to do. But meetings can’t be all bad, can they? When done properly, they’re important and can do a lot to facilitate discussion, share information,…

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Your Dream Team

One of the biggest frustrations we hear from people in leadership is that they have to be available to their teams “all the time” to answer questions and solve problems. They say that they read about dream teams that know how to move forward in the face of challenges but their team just doesn’t get it. When we ask them to share some examples of how this plays out, we often hear a long history of our client (as team…

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Provide Powerful Input

There is a big difference between sharing your opinion and giving credible input and knowing that difference can have a powerful impact on your success.   Giving relevant, useful input is an important skill that requires practice and thoughtfulness. Without a framework for giving input on a question or issue, many of us get anxious and then resort to giving our opinion. Yet, when decision-makers look to you for your expertise, they generally don’t want your opinion—they want useful input.…

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3 Key Steps to a Great 1:1

In many companies, managers meet regularly with their team members in what is called a 1:1. Over time, these meetings become the norm; it’s on the calendar and the meetings happen, but many managers report that they don’t really know how to structure those meetings so that they’re helpful for them, as the manager, and to their direct reports.     In many ways, these 1:1 meetings are mini-planning sessions.   You’re coming together to identify a vision for the…

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The Bones of Meetings

Last week, we started the conversation about meetings with our post, Meeting Madness. In it, we outlined the roles and rules that help to create great meetings. But no discussion of meetings would be complete without reviewing the importance of creating and using an agenda.  An agenda is to a meeting like our skeleton is to our body: it provides the internal structure that allows the meeting to successfully come to life.  Research on meetings has shown that whatever the group…

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Meeting Madness

“I cannot get my work done because all of my days are spent in *^#@ meetings!”   Sound familiar? Meetings are supposed to be a means to success, but most people in organizations describe meetings as a time-suck that actually prevent them from getting their work done.   We’d like to suggest that at the beginning of each year, you take time to inventory your meetings to decide if they are adding value and contributing to your success… and if they…

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What to do When Meetings Derail

Two weeks ago, we talked about Creating Effective Meetings  and last week we shared the contributions of one of our readers in Beyond Effective Meetings.  We trust that you are starting to think more deeply about the meetings that you initiate and the meetings you are in.  It is critical to ensure that your meetings are moving your teams forward so that they can create success vs. impeding success.  Once you have paused to reflect on the meetings you are…

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Beyond Effective Meetings

Last week our focus was on Creating Effective Meetings.   We heard from a lot of members of our community who said that the post was tremendously helpful and one of our readers provided some excellent ideas to consider. Bill S. in Illinois sent this note: Great ideas on meetings!   Let me offer another suggestion:  group all meetings in the morning or afternoon to leave large blocks of time available to actually work. I work in Information Technology and it is…

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Creating Effective Meetings

As consultants, we hear a lot of complaints about meetings.  We hear that there are too many, they eat up the bulk of the workweek, and most of them are ineffective.  From our perspective, the only reason to get 3 to 5 or even 10 or more people in a room is so that when they leave, they are able to be more effective.  They leave with information that creates confidence, they leave feeling they have influenced decisions that are…

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Your Meeting Agenda: Recipe for Success

As consultants we have been in and observed more meetings than we can probably count and can say without hesitation that the best meetings always, always have a good agenda. The businessperson’s relationship with agenda’s has not been consistent over the years.  In the 90’s, many agenda’s went overboard and became dictatorial – they were rigid, tedious and drained all life or spontaneity from meetings.   They were born of a zealous need to use those new computer programs to organize…

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