How many times have you been in a meeting when there was lots of discussion about the topic of hand only to have the real decisions happen in the hallway by a couple stakeholders minutes after the sit down? We’ve all been part of this. And it’s frustrating. Why assemble all these people to sit in a stuffy conference room for an hour or so if the two people who are going to make the real decisions are going to do so without everyone else?
It happens. It sucks. It’s the wrong approach too.
I didn’t realize how frustrating this past experiences were until I was part of the right way to do meetings. I have a startup client that has meetings the right way. Seldom does a meeting go over an hour. And during the meeting, there is an agenda. Topics are discussed. Decisions are made, if feasible. If not, action items with due dates are assigned. Once all topics have been discussed (or the hour is up), the meeting ends. When the door opens, everyone goes back to do their thing. No sidebar discussions outside the conference room to undermine the past 60 minutes. Stakeholders expect action items to be completed by due dates too.
I’ll just say it’s very refreshing.