Unusual Practices for More Successful and Creative Meetings
Most business leaders have their own way of keeping their top managers motivated and involved in the most important aspects of decision-making. Many of them have a unique approach to doing this. The most effective managers and CEOs even have a different approach to meetings, which are notoriously boring and usually ineffective when done in the traditional ways.
Here are some suggestions to help you shake up those meetings that are generally known to waste time, money, and opportunities:
Don’t meet too often
Traditional leaders usually meet their managers at least once a week, creating a routine that quickly becomes mind-numbing for the participants. What’s even worse is when it’s the same faces all the time, so that even when you have nothing to contribute to the topic, you are sitting there fighting sleep. The meetings can extend from the start of the day to lunch or even beyond.
Avoid such snorefests. Meet only when necessary, and call only the managers that are involved in the agenda. Managers shouldn’t tag along an assistant or subordinate unless warranted. If someone comes who does not have anything to contribute, you can politely ask the person to leave. Odds are good that person would be relieved too. Don’t dwell on the same topics you had the last time unless your meeting is about progress reports. Discourage rehashing because this will waste your time.
Meet in unusual places
To prevent boredom, shake up the boardroom now and then. For example, schedule a meeting well in advance and send a note for the team to meet you at a Vail ski rental. You can spend some time enjoying the slopes before you get down to business. Such exhilaration and fun can encourage creative thinking, especially because it’s done away from the office. Of course, if you schedule such meetings now and then, you should have at least the day to spend.
Set a time limit
If you’re doing a regular meeting, at least set a time limit. This will help you avoid rehashing and being sidetracked. In most meetings, when someone starts an office gossip, most of the time will be eaten up discussing that gossip. Discourage this activity with a timer. When the timer goes off, you should all be on your way out the door.
In some companies, instead of doing the meeting face to face, the participants use technology instead. This will save you time and money, especially if your managers are coming from satellite offices or branches.
Meetings are important, but they can harm your company if they are nothing but a time-wasting routine. Be creative, and remember that time is money. Make your meetings fast, interesting, and productive.