Streamline your meetings. Everyone, no matter how great a leader or manager, has experienced the meeting that got out of hand. Usually, it’s something that should have taken ten minutes to discuss, but somehow ballooned into an hour (with no decision by the end). The four biggest mistakes people make in meetings are responsible for most of the wasted time.
Bad meetings can resemble a rowdy kindergarten class–everyone wants to be the one talking. Ban interrupting. It’s rude. It slows the meeting down. It encourages half-baked thoughts. Let people finish.
- Failing to use written communication appropriately.
At most meetings, about half of the information could have been conveyed in a simple memo. If you’re meeting is a problem-solving or brainstorming session, give attendees the context and any important information in advance.
- Not including a formal end time.
All meetings should have a clear time window. Stick to it. The more you do this, the better you and your team will get at keeping on schedule–even if it’s painful the first time or two.
- Talking too much.
As the owner, it can be tempting to dominate the conversation. You have thoughts to convey! However, try to keep the rhapsodizing to a minimum.