Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Destroying meetings..

Opening session this morning is about destroying your meetings before they destroy you. A subject close to my heart!

Bad meetings cost a lot of money! Some organisations have recognised this and gone to a philosophy of no meetings. Eg Basecamp. CEO wrote piece called meetings are toxic with some simple rules.

If kept each other informed better, need to meet less. Put everything in one place, cloud based collaboration tools. Messaging, discussion, progress reports. Much quicker at problem solving. Meetings are fewer and shorter. Have to change the culture of how we work together.

Some meetings are necessary, but they need to be good meetings. Some companies, eg Intel , train everyone in how to run meetings. Also have signs in meetings rooms. Is there an agenda? Have you prepared? Do you know your role?

Have a timer. Restrict meetings to certain length. Have stand up meetings. Walking meetings. Go for a walk with a colleague.

Use software, structured tool for running meetings. Put agendas together, track tasks etc.

Future of meetings? Will never get away from them altogether. Should expect people to be smarter in their use of technology. Data and material sharing etc on screens. Drawing remote people in when needed. More virtual attendance.

Smarter meeting spaces eg Gridspace. Listens to meeting, interprets emotions, transcribes into minutes, identifies actions. More intelligence will be brought into meetings.

Think about the way we have run meetings in the past and change them get rid of meetings we don't need ( the dreaded status update meeting), and turn the rest into great meetings. Create agendas for every meeting. No purpose, no agenda, no meeting.

Maximise the use collaboration tools to add value to meetings.

Invest in technology in meetings spaces that will entice and delight.

1 comment:

Peter A said...

Plenty of scope....!
I suspect many practical groups have good meetings because they aren't thinking about 'having a meeting' at all, they're thinking 'sort this issue'. Maybe the more formalised higher-level ones can be least productive - partly from lax preparation and partly because the decisions needed are harder and less well-defined.
Lynda.com has an online course "Leading Productive Meetings" that is free for all staff.
There is a place for a relaxed catch-up meeting or even a grumble-fest of course - but not when it replaces needed progress and decision-making.