In a private workshop I conducted recently for a manufacturing company, the 22 front-line supervisors said their team meetings had started with such promise then hit a wall after three months.
Their meetings were a beating.
There are three types of meetings: 1) Information sharing, 2) Problem-solving and 3) Commitment building to drive accountability.
The supervisors decided their meetings would focus on problem-solving and then serve as a mechanism to hold one another accountable.
7 Business Meeting Tips
The structure for an effective 60-minute problem-solving meeting borrows from the approach I use in my monthly Vistage meetings with CEOs and Key Executives:
- To start the meeting, each person has 60 seconds to articulate a near-term problem or opportunity.
- The group votes on the two most significant issues described to solve together.
- The problem or opportunity is phrased as ‘How do I…” or “How do we…”
- Clarifying questions are asked for up to 15 minutes to ensure everyone understands the issue.
- Actions for solving the problem or pursuing the opportunity are recommended.
- Actions the person with the issue commits to taking are recorded.
- At the next meeting, progress is measured against the original commitment.
In a 60-minute meeting, you can typically work two issues for about 20 minutes per issue.
The result: You’ve solved a problem, reduced frustration and increased morale and performance.