When your meetings have direction, clarity focus and permission, they become powerful tools to move any organization (and family) forward!
- Status update / Tactical Meeting
- This meeting is specifically for immediate decisions that have to be made and the place for daily or weekly updates. Here you are asking for progress reports and ensuring that projects are moving forward as planned. These meetings should be accomplished in no more than one hour. If they take longer, they are not structured properly or the two types of meetings are being mixed together which causes confusion.
- Brainstorming Meeting
- This meeting is designed to think “Big Picture”. This is the place to dream about the next product launch, conference you want to develop or direction you are taking the organization.
- Who needs to be at this meeting? Make sure the right people are at the table. There is nothing worse than having another meeting to discuss the meeting you just had in order to fill someone in about the meeting. ( I’m tired and annoyed just from tyoing that! ) If someone needed to hear what was discusses in the meeting, they probably should have been invited. I understand that there are times you have to cascade a message to your staff about a key decision that was made during the meeting. What I am referring to is having all the key people at the table the first time to ensure everyone receives the same message and has the same discussion all at once.
- A meeting is a request for people to give up some of their time. This is why meetings should be:
- Time bound
- Clarify expectations regarding how long the meeting will be before everyone arrives. I try to stick to one hour time blocks for statue update / tactical meetings. For brainstorming meetings, I recommend setting aside at least two hours to just begin a brain storming process. Make sure this is uninterrupted time so you and your team have time to dream and talk through big picture ideas. I recommend scheduling quarterly off site brainstorming meetings to discuss the overall health of your organization.
- Stick to your schedule
- Clear talking points and very few of them
- Don’t feel the need to solve all the worlds problems at one meeting. Keep the talking points to two or three of the most pressing issues that need discussed. This allows time for discussion and questions.
- Time bound
- There is nothing worse than coming to a meeting where you feel people feel that are being talked at and have no freedom to truly share their opinion and contribute. If someone is invited people to a meeting, they are there for a reason. It should be because they are trusted and the team appreciates their feedback. A healthy meeting environment is on where people feel the freedom to openly share their ideas in order to come up with the best way to move a project or organization forward.