Meetings are often seen as the most useless part of business life, but they don’t have to be. In fact, meetings can be an important tool for driving your company’s growth, but they have to be run effectively for your team to get value and stop viewing them as a waste of time.
Great Meetings Maintain Alignment and Focus
Meetings are a critical tool for keeping your team on the same page and providing accountability. Everyone is busy, and it’s easy for people to get lost in their own worlds and forget the big picture. When structured properly, company meetings help your staff check their progress on achieving goals and staying aligned with your vision.
Here are three types of meetings to start holding at your company:
Annual Planning Sessions
The entire leadership team should meet off-site for two days to review your progress and results for the previous year, to confirm or reset the company vision, and to establish goals for the upcoming year. Once your company goals are established, you should select 3-5 priorities or “rocks” to focus on for the first quarter, and establish accountability and success measurements for each rock. Finally, you should prioritize and solve any issues standing in the way of achieving your vision so you can pave the way for success as you start the year.
Quarterly Planning Sessions
Team alignment and health has a tendency to "fray at the edges" after about 90 days, so it's important to meet each quarter to re-align and re-focus everyone. Each quarter, plan a one-day meeting with your leadership team to review results from the last 90 days and establish high-level priorities for the next 90 days. This is also the ideal time to discuss and solve important issues that are standing in the way of achieving your vision. Focusing on a few key initiatives or "rocks" each quarter - and actually completing them - will help you make steady progress toward your long-term vision and will help you maintain energy and momentum throughout the year.
Weekly Leadership Team Meetings
In between your quarterly planning sessions, it's important to maintain focus and accountability so make steady progress on your rocks and solve any obstacles that crop up throughout the quarter. Your leadership team should meet weekly for 90 minutes to make sure everyone stays on track.
Consider using the Level 10 Meeting Agenda™ format from the Entrepreneurial Operating System. In addition to helping your team maintain focus, this agenda also includes a Meeting Rating section at the end, which helps ensure that meetings are a good use of everyone’s time. You can get more great insight on meetings from the EOS website, and in the book Traction, by EOS founder Gino Wickman.
If you develop a regular weekly, quarterly, and annual meeting pulse and follow a regular meeting agenda for each type of meeting, you'll improve the discipline, focus, and accountability on your team. To ensure they add real value, keep your meetings laser-focused on SOLVING issues instead of discussing them to death. Your team will thank you, and you’ll start looking forward to meetings instead of dreading them!
- Download a free chapter to the book Traction to learn more about the Entrepreneurial Operating System
- Download a copy of the "How to Lead World-Class Meetings" eBook from the EOS website
- Book a time to talk to me about how to run more effective meetings