Does your calendar look like a bar code? Another boring meeting?

Posted by: on Jun 11, 2014 | No Comments

does your diary look like a barcode

Does your calendar look like a bar code? Another boring meeting?  Do you need to meet at all?

Look at your diary in the week ahead – does it, to quote the book “Sticky Wisdom” by the folks at What if? look like a bar code? With blocks of time blacked out for meeting after meeting?

In any large organisation there is an inbuilt tension between the need for the various departments to get the job done and the need to keep people informed of what is going on.  Failure to communicate in an effective way leads to silo working where individual teams or departments are working in a way that may be contrary to the overall vision and plan of the organisation or simply inefficient, duplicating energy, effort and resources.

So many of us accept “boring meetings” as a necessary evil:  and I would agree if I thought that they actually got work done. More often than not they simply create more work.

So my first question is – particularly for standing item type meetings – do you need to meet at all?  I appreciate that you may all need certain types of information to keep informed across your business, to grow a sense of involvement and inclusion… but do you design meetings with those aims in mind.  Or do you all just show up?

I would like to propose that your regular meetings undergo a design process where you

  • Explore the variety of information types that need to be circulated through the organisation.
  • Have a refined sense of the level of detail required by different teams and sections of the organisation
  • Create a matrix of information type and manner of delivery that is bespoke to their organisation
  • Then depending on what you need you can skill up the meeting participants to “give good meeting” as the saying goes.
  • Learn and develop key communication skills: creating effective key messages, delivering arresting presentations and calls to action.
  • Develop an often neglected element of communication skills – listening, in particular “appreciative listening”.

How will this benefit your business?  I suggest that likely outcomes include:

  • Fewer, more productive meetings where participants feel able to contribute
  • The creation of a greater range of types of meeting, information flows and communication within the business
  • Renewed energy and commitment to meetings that are created or called

If you like the sound of that for your business then get in touch:  we can help you build a better business meeting.

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