I read a survey recently where individuals were asked “What’s the worst thing about meetings?”. The most common responses were…
- No clear purpose or objective
- No agenda
- Too long
- Boring (nothing new or interesting)
- Not inspiring or motivating
- Doesn’t start on time, stay on track or finish on time
- Lack of interaction
- Allowing attendees to ramble and repeat the same comments
- Weak presenter (unprepared, not succinct, monotone)
- Repeating information for late arrivals
- No clear and specific action points
Ever been to a meeting with one or two (or even all) of these characteristics? How did you feel at the end of it?
Meetings are an opportunity to communicate, to learn, to encourage, to inspire, to connect. But all to often they fail to do any of those things. Al Pittampali, in his ebook “Modern Meetings” says that “Meetings is where momentum goes to die.”
If you’re running a meeting, review the list above and make sure you don’t do any of these things. You owe it to those people who have given up their valuable time to be there.
If you’re attending a meeting, participate fully and only offer thoughts, ideas and comments that add to the proceedings and move things forward. And if the meeting is characterised by the above bullets, remind yourself to decline the invitation next time. You owe that to yourself!