As we work with companies and listen to their employees, the number one complaint we hear is some version of “we have too many meetings!” Sometimes, it is “I waste so much time in meetings that I have a hard time getting my real work done.” More often than not, we usually don’t come away thinking that there are too many meetings. Rather, what we find is that their meetings suck.
Often times, the main problem seems to be that many of these meetings are actually verbal reports. The meeting leader (CEO, Executive, Director, Manager, Department Head) brings the group together and shows a PowerPoint and talks about decisions that have already been made, or gives a status report on progress for some strategic initiative. These meetings are one-sided, top-down deliveries with little interaction from the floor. The only interaction between those in attendance and the leader, is the cursory ask, “are there any questions?” It is our opinion that most reports should be emailed for review, as opposed to being delivered during a meeting.
In our recently released guidebook, Make Your Meetings Matter, we outline instances of when report-oriented meetings are necessary and how to make them beneficial. Additionally, we discuss ways to improve the effectiveness of your meetings and keep your people from complaining about “too many meetings.”
For a deeper dive, we recommend our Effective Meetings workshop which due to the pandemic is now being offered virtually in addition to its traditional in-person format.