Let's Stop Meeting Like This: Tools to Save Time and Get More Done
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Ugh―meetings. They’re where productivity goes to die, right? There has to be a better way. According to leading consultants Dick and Emily Axelrod, there is.
Using the same principles that make video games so engaging and that transformed the numbing assembly line into the dynamic shop floor, the Axelrods outline a flexible and adaptable system used to run truly productive meetings in all kinds of organizations―meetings where people create concrete plans, accomplish tasks, build connections, and move projects forward. They show how to design every aspect of a meeting―from the way you greet people at the beginning to how you sum up at the end―so that real work actually gets done. Those who have adopted this system will never go back. Neither will you.
and creates connections between people that allow the work to flow. The decision to spend time creating an environment where people feel welcome is one only you can make. How much time you allot and how you welcome people is up to you. The important thing is to decide to do this. Once you have decided that creating a welcoming environment is important, you open up possibilities for creating that environment. Until you decide welcoming is important, nothing can happen. Start by building on what
discover the way things are. Then you usually need time to actively reflect on the issue in a group discussion or when you have some time to yourself. There is wisdom in the old adage “sleep on it.” It’s hard to predict when these moments of insight will occur, but when they occur, we see the light. We envision how to address the issue in ways we never imagined. This leap into the future energizes and moves you to action. Not everyone in the meeting will have these insights, but all you need is
energized by knowing you completed your task, or frustrated because the work is unfinished. The mood, sense of accomplishment, and pulse at the end become the input for your next meeting. Ending well makes the Welcome that much easier next time you meet. The following chapters provide guidance that will help meeting leaders, contributors, and facilitators put the finishing touches on their Meeting Canoe. Please join us in the next chapter, “First Aid for Meetings.” 105 let ’s stop meeting like
but they may see some of what you see. This common ground provides a zone of agreement that allows you to move forward. Later you can return to the areas of disagreement. If all else fails, take a break. Taking a break allows you and other group members to reflect on your discussion. In longer meetings and where weather permits, you may suggest that group participants take a walk and discuss the issue while walking side by side. Walking side by side defuses the conflict because you are no longer
” at our website. Here are four steps to changing your meeting behavior: 1. Pick a meeting to analyze—a meeting that occurs with some frequency, be it weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annually. 2. Complete “Your Meeting Experience Questionnaire.” 3. Review the results and identify one area where you would like to behave differently. 4. Develop and implement a plan for changing your behavior. We suggest you pick only one area for improvement at a time because when one group member does