How To Run A Meeting

Bottom Line Up Front: Remember the Three B’s of Army Briefing and apply them to a meeting: Be Brief, Be Brilliant, Be Gone.

For a Simple Meeting.

Ideally they respect you.

Ideally you put out an agenda.

Ideally the team has worked together.

However, none of this is necessary to run good meetings or earn others’ respect.

Tell people if they don’t think the meeting is a good investment of their time they are free to leave.

Mean it.

First, be brief.

Brevity takes many forms.

For this post we’ll look at Brevity of Duration and Brevity of Pace.

Brevity of Duration: set a finish time for the meeting and make it as short as possible.

I held a meeting yesterday. One. hour. long. because we had a lot of material to cover.

We had very smart people in the room who knew far more than I.

We had a product to deliver at the end of the meeting.

I told everyone, “We’re out of here in an hour.”

Put in a failsafe. Tell someone young and ambitious, “If I don’t stay on schedule get up and walk out.”

That shows confidence. Confidence inspires people.

Brevity of Pace: keep the meeting moving briskly.

Tell everyone at the beginning to keep their comments brief and to the point. Actively manage them without being rude. Hard to do this well—especially with very sharp people– and comes with experience.

Say what you expect.

Gently urge them forward.

We were reviewing a document and doing a common-sense review. Keep or delete the comments?

If discussion dragged I asked, “OK, so does it stay or not?”

Second, be brilliant.

Brilliance means shine. Brilliance means do a great job running the meeting. Brilliance means enjoy the task.

Joy is infectious.

Brilliance means prepare as best you can.

If you can’t prepare, admit it.

Make up for lack of preparation with humility, good intent, good communication.

Greet each person by name. Have some details right when they arrive. Maybe have coffee at each seat. Maybe a pad and pencil. Give personal attention. Make people feel they are important.

Each of us is important.

Say please and thank you.

If you get up for coffee get coffee for others.

Third, be gone.

Close the meeting gracefully. With gratitude.

For an hour long meeting, announce progress at 15 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes then 50 minutes in. At 50 minutes in say you’ll conclude in 5 minutes. 55 minutes in close down and review. Ask if everyone is clear on due outs. Review the due outs. Use gentle public pressure to get soft commitments.

Announce the meeting officially over. Leave if you must. Say all are invited to stay to talk afterward.

If people stick around it’s a good sign.

Call to action: Apply these hints to your next meeting. Let me know how it goes.

Post Source Here: How To Run A Meeting


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