Meet the Meeting Killers Archives | Smarter Solutions
Today there was a great article in the Wall Street Journal by Sue Shellenbarger – Meet the Meeting Killers. In the article she identifies 5. "Planning ahead an learning to manage meeting show stoppers (Portions of this commentary were taken from The Wall Street Journal article by Sue Shellenbarger that appeared on May 16, Meet the Meeting Killers). and “Meet the Meeting Killers” by Sue Shellenbarger, Wall Street Journal, D1, minutes at the weekly staff meeting if you feel others should assume this duty.
Instead, prior to the meeting I would have all electronic devices stored in a basket outside the meeting. Remember the Old Westerns? The saloon owner had the gun slingers check their six-guns outside - for good reason.
Meet the Meeting Killers
The sudden ringing of a cell phone certainly won't kill anyone but can and does "do harm to" the momentum of a meeting. Let's face it, meetings are necessary and they continue to go on as they have for centuries. It would help if we got to embrace some common sense points, that if adhered to, would go a long way in not making attendance at a meeting an experience not to have to dread.
Here are just a few: Begin and conclude the meeting in a timely manner. Whether you are the leader or an attendee at a meeting become better informed as to your role. Be respectful of others - this is quite lacking in the nonprofit environment of their points of view, their knowledge or lack there of and of their time.
Don't pass out reams of new and unread material during a meeting. Be prepared by reading previously distributed material. Have the courage to call out the negative or disruptive behavior of a fellow attendee generally do this outside of the meeting.
If you are the meeting leader, determine if the meeting is really necessary in the first place. Provide for a 15 or minute social time before or after the meeting. Next come the first degree offenders: He or she remains quiet in a meeting, and then later undermines bosses and decisions.
Shellenbarger says such "meeting killers" result in lack of accomplishment, unnecessary tension, and longer meetings. According to Elizabeth Bernstein, also a writer for The Wall Street Journal, this word defines a common workplace sentiment.
When employees begin to feel like their office is dysfunctional, they whine. It can keep whiners stuck in a problem, rather than working to identify a solution. It can be toxic to relationships," Bernstein says. Chronic complaining, as Bernstein describes it, has become an unfortunate side effect of poor relationships in the office, inefficient meetings and lack of cooperation.
She also reminds us that whining takes time that could be better spent creating actual solutions and accomplishing goals in the conference room.
A Manifesto to End Boring Meetings – Flourish Foundry | Business Trading News
Whether it's at the big table or behind your desk, spend that time making yourself useful, not voicing complaints. Of course, this is all advice we've heard before. Fortunately, both authors provide a few practical tips for moving things along, particularly in meetings. Set a clear agenda. Redirect people back to the agenda when they ramble or digress.
Draw out quiet people by asking them in advance for a specific contribution. Do a "round robin" when appropriate, to allow everyone to contribute. Interrupt people who talk too long or talk to each other. Set an ending time for the meeting and stick to it. Still, sounds like common sense we've all heard before. Perhaps that's why entrepreneur and anti-marketing guru Seth Godin proposes more radical solutions in his blog: Understand that all problems are not the same.
So why are you meeting? Does every issue deserve an hour? Why is there a default length?