+44(0)20 7036 8899 info@whitewatergroup.eu

Averil is talking to BBC’s Fred McAulay tomorrow morning, following an article by Eddie Mair where he describes meetings at the BBC, saying humorously that staff priorities are: “1) Try to have a meeting; 2) If you’re not having a meeting, you should be planning one 3) If you’re not having or planning a meeting, you should be talking to someone about the pointlessness of your last meeting.” Many people in other organisations feel much the same – So many meetings, so little time. Here are some of Averil’s tips for good meetings: How to ensure your meetings are rubbish

  1. Always wait 20 minutes till the last straggler arrives – that way you de-motivate all the organised, punctual people and ensure late ones know you will always wait for them
  2. Always run over time. This maximises the stress everyone takes into their next meeting and ensures that the tradition of Step 1 continues
  3. Make sure those who shout loudest are heard every tine. Make no effort to include introverts. Who cares what they think?
  4. Keep people in the dark about the point of the meeting. You only really want to check they are in the building
  5. Call a meeting every time you want to avoid having to make a decision and you need scapegoats

How to have the meetings that will make your people flourish

  1. Get the basics right – make sure people know why they are there, when the meeting will end and what you need from them
  2. Greet every contribution with interest and positivity. In the most successful team meetings the ratio is 5:1 – positive to negative. Yes, really. Try it. Ditch the negativity
  3. Ask questions rather than give your own opinion. Say, ‘What a great idea! How will we get over the problem with X?’, rather than, ‘That will never work’ or ‘We tried that once’
  4. Be inspirational.  Paint pictures about what you are trying to achieve and how important everyone is to success
  5. Find ways to make sure everyone is ‘heard’, even if that means asking them to write things on post- it notes rather than speak out loud if they are silent types.
  6. Make sure people leave on time, excited and clear about what they have to do next

Averil Leimon Leadership Psychologist and Director www.whitewaterleaders.eu

We’d love to hear from you!