Are you in a habit of meeting together?

Dealth Meetings

Recently, I found myself in dialog with a couple individuals who are part of an investment holding group who places a heavy emphasis on culture and leadership development.  As you might imagine with their being a part of an investment group, they have the opportunity perform due diligence on a number of businesses.  It was interesting to hear them say something similar to that which I’ve also experienced.  While I can’t quote it verbatim, it went something along the lines of “it’s remarkable how many businesses haven’t even heard of the importance of principles someone like Patrick Lencioni teaches.  Even the basics of holding effective meetings is something we often find lacking in these businesses.”

Yes, this is a common observation I find as well.  Time and time again, I run across individuals who have never heard of Patrick Lencioni’s Five Dysfunctions of a Team.  While the Five Dysfunctions of a Team touches on Trust, Conflict, Commitment, Accountability, and Results which is much border than today’s topic, a small importance piece of this model is the need for effective meetings.

In his book, Death by Meeting, Patrick Lencioni has written many insights as the importance of effective meetings and their being intentional with purpose/format.  Lencioni outlines four different types of meetings as follows:

Daily Check-in (5 – 10 minutes)

Purpose/Format:  Share daily schedules and activities

• don’t sit down
• keep it administrative
• don’t cancel even when some people can’t be there

Weekly Tactical (45 – 90 minutes)

Purpose/Format:  Review weekly activities and metrics, and resolve tactical obstacles and issues

• don’t set agenda until after initial reporting
• postpone strategic discussions

Monthly Strategic (2 – 4 hours)
(or adhoc strategic)

Purpose/Format:  Discuss, analyze, brainstorm and decide upon critical issues affecting long term success

• limit to one or two topics
• prepare and do research
• engage in good conflict

Quarterly Off-site Review (1 – 2 days)

Purpose/Format:  Review strategy, competitive landscape, industry trends, key personnel, team development

• get out of office
• focus on work; limit social activities
• don’t over-structure or over-burden the schedule

Having led turnarounds firsthand and consulting for a number of organizations seeing similar results, I can’t place enough emphasis on the importance of effective meetings.  While my team alignment process is more focused at Strategic and Off-site meeting facilitation, part of the process I facilitate normally always includes a review of meetings.  While the exact outline given today may not be a fit for everyone, I can assure you it’s more a fit than most initially perceive.

Patrick Lencioni and The Table Group offer many great resources which are a must read for leaders in business today.  While I bring a bit of my own flavor to the table, these resources are the foundation for the approach I take in working with leaders and their teams.  I’d love to have the opportunity to aid with an assessment of your team which includes an assessment of your meeting effectiveness.  Fill out the Complimentary Confidential Analysis form to begin the process.

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