Meetings don’t have to be boring.
In today’s culture we’ve become brainwashed that because most meetings are boring then all meetings are be boring.
If you were watching a show on TV or Netflix that’s boring you would never think, “Wow, every episode of this show is absolutely terrible (a sentenced uttered by the tens of people who tuned in to all seven episodes of The Cape)! I guess all TV shows MUST be this bad too.” We would never jump to this kind of conclusion about anything else, but we do with meetings.
Here’s the truth most of us don’t realize:
A meeting is only as good as the person who is leading it, the people they invite, and the agenda they create.
When we can look at meetings in this light it allows us to see them for what they really are:
An opportunity to collaborate with a community of like-minded people to advance a shared vision of what could and should be a reality.
And who wouldn’t want to be a part of that?
Creating these kind of meetings, the kind that matter, the kind that give birth to meaningful action which create positive change don’t have to be complicated. When we strip away the superfluous nonsense meetings people WANT to attend are pretty simple:
1. A review of your team’s successes
Meetings should be less talking at and more sharing with. If you’ve invited people who are able and willing to contribute significantly to a conversation about the agenda all of you care about then isn’t it only fair (and smart) to let them actually contribute?
Make space in the meeting to share reports of progress made and hope that is being found as each of you works closer to the creation of what all of you care about. Let this kind of start fuel the drive, passion, and direction of the rest of your time together.
2. A reflection on where you are
Good meetings become great ones when the person leading them can tactfully move from wins to the reality. The truth is if you’re still meeting then the big win, the why behind your meeting hasn’t been accomplished yet. That’s OK. What’s not OK is remaining stuck in the past without taking action on the present.
Acting on the here and now is simply preparing tomorrow in such a way so you don’t need to repair yesterday.
3. A response to what’s coming up
Once you know the reality you’re in you can begin to meticulously prepare for the reality you hope to create. The agenda of the meeting should allow for review and reflection. But at the end of the day it’s your response that will determine the success of your meeting and, ultimately, your team. Craft an agenda that will help everyone continue on course.
Meetings that matter are simple but not easy. They need you to put more work on the front and back ends then you probably will in the middle of actually living them.
It’s your preparation that will create the backdrop of your meeting, where you and your team will draw the roadmap that will take you where the world needs you to be. And when you get there you will see how all the planning and meeting came together and why it was worth it. And you’ll want to do it all again.