The Only Purpose for Any Meeting, and 3 Meeting Types to Ditch Now

standing meeting Any meeting you have should be for one purpose and one purpose only: making and committing to a decision.

Let me restate that: only hold meetings to make decisions and commit to those decisions as a group.

[contextly_auto_sidebar id="XBgwKA29TzRGfkpdazCZOYR8ErbVTqqL"]Anything beneath that standard creates unnecessary work, squanders energy and time, and can even be demotivating -- especially for the members of your team who are task-oriented.

Many teams have the following meeting types in a regular rotation. But Ridiculously Efficient teams must hold themselves to a higher standard. I challenge you to eliminate or restrict these wherever possible. [rebel]

Meeting Types to Ditch

Status Update Meetings

Replace with: a central shared dashboard, team collaboration software or written status updates

Reasons to eliminate this meeting:

  • Individual updates may not be relevant to rest of the team, wasting their time.
  • Dashboards and team collaboration tools are real-time, and stakeholders (like your entrepreneur) can view them 24/7. Meetings happen at a set time, which may or may not be convenient for the team.
  • Most humans can scan 10x faster and more effectively (see Geoffrey James' excellent Inc.com post for more on this) than they can listen. So a summary email is actually more time-efficient for the whole group than a verbal presentation.

Group Brainstorms

Replace with: brainstorms in a tightly focused group of creative thinkers who get energy from brainstorming, like high Quick Starts*

Reasons to eliminate this meeting:

  • Meeting attendees with high Follow Thru* won't hear the ideas for what they are -- fleeting ideas. Instead, they'll hear action items, which will exhaust them over the course of a lengthy brainstorm.
  • Very high Quick Starts* may need to focus and quantify their commitment to an idea before sharing it with a group. Strategic Coach offers their clients a fabulous tool for this called the Impact Filter.

* Quick Start and Follow Thru refer to parts of the Kolbe Index A assessment. I have no affiliate relationship with Kolbe -- but I love the assessment and use it in all of my teams. Check it out here.

Unfocused Meetings

Replace with: Laser-focused meetings; OR a call, email or brief one-on-one meeting

Reasons to eliminate this meeting:

  • Meetings without a clear agenda derail attendees' productivity and deplete their energy.
  • Meetings without clear starting and ending times eliminate any incentive for the group to own the meeting's overall relevancy and punctuality.

Ultimately, I'm not against all meetings. I'm just against bad, unfocused, irrelevant and unproductive ones.

Time is a precious resource. My goal is to give you X-ray vision in a minefield of potential distractions.

[/rebel]

Marissa Brassfield

Marissa Brassfield is a productivity expert, branding consultant and communication efficiency specialist who helps entrepreneurs and high-performance teams become ridiculously efficient.

Marissa has worked with some of the most visionary entrepreneurs on the planet. She’s dialed in to the frustrations these results-oriented, interrupt-driven individuals have with bureaucracy and suboptimal team performance. Her coaching helps entrepreneurs counteract growth-killing practices and unlock unparalleled performance from their support staff.