Meetings that Produce Results+ Return to Blog Home
March 18, 2013
So many meetings end without clear-cut next steps. Some were “standing meetings” without real agendas, some got hijacked, others simply used up people at $60 or $100 or more per hour in wages plus the fact that they were unproductive in other work. Perhaps they just needed time to talk.
Two problems. First each participant is unclear on the actions to take when they leave the meeting, the actions that are consistent with achieving key business outcomes. So the meeting just perpetuates the inaction. Secondly the lack of rigor around organizational processes keeps people in their ruts and reinforces that what they are doing is working for them. Changing it becomes not just scary, but wrong.
People need a taste of success. They need to see what positive progress can result when purpose meets focus and when people can be proud of what they’ve accomplished. It doesn’t happen in the meeting, but it won’t happen without the meeting.
Give people a taste of what’s possible. Set up the meeting expectation with participants in advance. Set outcomes in behavioral terms: Exactly what must be completed as a result of the meeting. If appropriate, brainstorm and work out the tactical aspects of tasks. Create a check-in to make sure things stay on target. Put yourself in the place of greatest potential to make it happen. If it doesn’t work the first time, try again. Try it outside of work in your scout troop or community organizations. It works.