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How to kill needless meetings: 7 tips
Stuck in recurring meeting madness? Leaders share their tips for how to have fewer, better meetings
We've all spent days in back-to-back meetings, shuffling from one conference room to the next as the hours tick by, lamenting the time we could be spending on actual work. If we are lucky enough to have one meeting-free day a week, we guard it with our lives.
If the majority of people can relate, why do we all seem to be stuck in meeting madness? Because despite the annoyance factor, meetings have clear benefits, points out Alexander S. Lowry, professor of finance at Gordon College.
"They are essential for enabling collaboration, creativity, and innovation. They often foster relationships and ensure proper information exchange," says Lowry. "Yet the excessive meeting culture drives most people bonkers."
"Every minute spent in a wasteful meeting eats into time for solo work that’s equally essential for creativity and efficiency," he adds. "Even more important is that meetings interrupt the ability to focus without distraction on a cognitively demanding task. As a consequence, people tend to come to work early, stay late, or use weekends for quiet time to concentrate."
[ Are you known as a leader with high or low EQ? See our related story, 10 things leaders with emotional intelligence never do. ]
CIOs and leaders who are having trouble finding the balance between meeting time and individual work – for themselves and for their team – should consider the following tips to slash the number of meetings and make the remaining ones better.
Shorten meetings by 15 minutesThrivatize
Create meeting-free timeGordon College
Limit "crisis" meetings
Meetings are normally driven by the culture of the company and the process is handed down from previous generations. Make sure you are not handing down too many crisis meetings - limit them, or eliminate them if you can." – Wayne Strickland, VP of global distribution strategy, Hallmark Cards
Prune the attendeesNotejoy
Don't hesitate to cancelTetraVX
Tie meetings to revenueGuidedChoice
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