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In 2012, London Business School and Harvard Business School teamed up to study the “span of activity” of several CEOs. This is academic speak for the question, “what do business leaders do all day?” Their findings concluded that CEOs spend 1/3 of their time in meetings. No shocker there. Communication is the cornerstone of any business’s operating efficiency, and meetings are one of a few communication tools leaders employ.
There is both art and process in running a great meeting. To learn the art, go deep. Pick up a copy of Lencioni’s Death By Meeting (great title) and read it cover to cover. To learn the process, take 5 minutes today, right now, to take an action that will improve your company’s communication effectiveness. Copy and print the checklist below and use it to audit the next meeting you attend. What gets measured, gets managed, and this WILL make a difference.
|1||Agenda sent out one (1) day in advance|
|2||Meeting Chair is prepared for meeting (on time, ready to time meeting, ready to take notes, etc.)|
|3||All participants are on time (in-person and/or telecom)|
|4||Participants have brought a copy of the agenda with written notes on suggested solutions.|
|5||Additional agenda items suggested (if needed) at the start of the meeting.|
|6||Meeting started on time (agenda items started at the start time of the meeting).|
|7||Meeting Chair maintained a list of action items for the Action Log.|
|8||Action items clearly defined (what, who, when) at the end of the meeting.|
|9||Meeting stayed reasonably on track per the agenda.|
|10||Meeting ended on time (or early).|
|11||Decisions were made on at least 2 critical issues.|
|12||What was the cost of this meeting?|
|13||What was the value of this meeting?|
|14||What could you do to improve this meeting?|