Do you ever dread leading a meeting because you know that people are going to show up with barely concealed negativity or meeting malaise? People have lots of possible reasons for resisting your meeting. Take a hard, honest look at the meetings you run. Do any of these conditions exist?
- It’s heinously boring. (Sorry, but it had to be said.) See here and here for ways to liven it up.
- There’s no agenda.
- There is an agenda. But it’s so jam-packed you can’t possible have a decent conversation about any of the agenda items.
- They are confused about the meeting process.
- Time is a precious commodity that they think you’re wasting.
- There is no agreed-upon way to stop outbreaks of Verbal Dysentery.
- As the meeting leader, you ask for input, but never do anything with it.
- A standing meeting that once made sense has now turned into “meeting for meeting’s sake”.
- You tolerate interruptions and distractions. Can you say “lap texting”?
- They just hate meetings. Period.
Here’s the good news: you can absolutely do something about numbers 1 – 9. And, I’d be willing to bet that if those nine barriers to meeting success were addressed, not so many people would be on board with #10.
Remember, even if you don’t have a management title, when you lead a meeting, you are a leader. True leaders step up and address things that aren’t working. So, if you are dreading a meeting, consider what role (if any) your meeting leadership skills play in the dread. Then, put on your Big Kid Pants and get to work making your meetings productive, can’t-miss events.
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