Are Meetings Crippling Your Organization?

October 3, 2011

“If an operating room were as sloppily run as our meetings, patients would die. If a restaurant kitchen put as little planning into a meal as we put into our meetings, dinner would never be served.”

“Regularly interrupting the day to bring our best minds together to focus on the urgent makes it impossible for these people to spend their focused energy on what’s actually important.”

Do these two statements resonate with you? Are you tired of continually spending time in the conference room and then walking out and wondering what, if anything, was accomplished? If so, the book The Modern Meeting Standard might be a good read for you.  In this book the author quite directly lays out many of the reasons for our ineffective meetings including it being a key way to avoid decision making and taking responsibility for decisions.

The author mentions seven principles of modern meetings (as opposed to traditional meetings):

 – It supports a decision that has already been made.
 – It moves fast and ends on time.
 – It limits the number of attendees.
 – It rejects the unrpepared.
 – It produces committed action plans.
 – It refuses to be informational.  Reading memos (emails) is mandatory.
 – It works only alongside a culture of brainstorming.

Some excellent points in this book.  So if you want to quit wasting the time of your best and brightest, I would recommend you picking up this book and seing how you might apply its principles in your organization.  Additionally, another good book on meetings is Patrick Lencioni’s Death by Meeting.

Remember, you are a steward of your time and of the time of the people in your organization and they are your most precious resource.

Let’s serve our Lord with excellence this week.
BG