Last week we discussed how you can swap out the Pain for the Gain in your next 1:1 meeting. If you missed that Thought Partner, you can find it HERE.

This week we’re shifting scenes from 1:1 Meetings to Group Meetings.

If simply reading the words “group meeting” invokes an acid reflux reaction in your body, chances are you’ve attended a meeting or two thinking “here we go…we’re on the road to nowhere.” (Shout out to all Talking Heads fans and children of the 80s if you nailed that reference. You will have your work cut out for you in today’s post.)

But honesty, team meetings can become fruitless if they are not scheduled, staged, and solution-focused. Preparing intentionally and staying on track will leave your team feeling like they’re “walking on sunshine.” (😎 ☀️)

Use these 3 Techniques to Improve your Meetings TODAY:

1. Ask: “Why Are We Here?” – If you don’t have an answer to this question, disband the meeting. Discussions for the sake of discussions are often a waste of time for the collective group. If you need to discuss something, meet with individual stakeholders. If you know why you’re there, state it and listen to others state why they think they’re there. You may be surprised by what you hear; it could give you some insight as to where each of your group members finds themselves in the dynamic. Stick to the REASON WHY YOU ARE THERE. This is sometimes the hardest part of keeping meetings on track. (You may want to email this question ahead of time; might save you the time of gathering all together.)

2. Put a Name on It – In sticking with our musical references, Beyoncé encouraged engagement by telling us to “put a ring on it”, in a similar fashion, you too can garner engagement by putting someone’s name beside an agenda item. If you want something done, get someone to agree to do it. At the end of your meeting, ensure you have people responsible for next steps or parking lot items. That person is responsible for the follow-up and for kicking off the next meeting if necessary. 

3. Push It – (I mean, why not, right? The 80s was such a great decade!) Yes, every action needs a champion to push it. Once you’ve put a name to it, you may need to help push it and to ask the questions – What’s the next step? Who’s in charge of the step after that? How will we know we’re moving forward successfully? What is needed now?

If I’ve inspired you to try out one or all three of these meeting tweaks, I’m grateful.

If I’ve inspired you to just cue up some kickin’ nostalgic tunes on your drive today, I’m grateful for that as well. After all, “I’m just giving you the best that I’ve got” (one last one for good measure 😉).