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This is Gord Sheppard’s guest article.
Let’s face facts, most people deal with unproductive meetings every single day. You are familiar with the types of meetings I am referring to:
Executives talk more about golf than they do about improving profitability.
It takes an hour to decide which brand of gluten-free hot dog to serve at the summer employee bar-b-q. (I’ve been there.
If someone leaves the meeting, they should check their phone every 10 minutes
What if you spent 2 hours trying new marketing ideas, only to realize that no one in the room had any idea about marketing?
Gord SheppardI could continue, but I can sense your meeting pain as you read this. We can all agree that unproductive meetings are not possible.
Why? They are expensive, time-consuming, and can frustrate staff, which could lead to them quitting. Bad meeting behavior can affect your ability to provide excellent customer service and ultimately cost you a lot.
But don’t despair! Based on my experience with more than 2000 meetings, here are 7 Amazing Meeting Habits that Will Make You Money.
MH#1: Describe Your Strategic Objective at the Start of Your Meeting
Here’s what happens when you clearly state your most important strategic goal at the beginning of every meeting.
It will set the tone and focus everyone’s attention to why they are there
You can ask anyone who says something unrelated, “Is what your saying right now moving us towards our strategic objective?”
You can then re-state your objective at the end of the meeting and ask “Did this meeting help us achieve our strategic objective?” If the answer to that question is yes, then it was a great session. If you get a negative answer, you have some work to do in order to make your next meeting more profitable.
Take, for example, this Key Strategic Objective for Apple
We ask less of the world, but we ask more about ourselves.
Let’s now imagine a meeting for new product development at Apple. The facilitator could say, “During this meeting let’s challenge ourselves as a group to responsibly use Earth’s resources when discussing the development of this new product.”
They could then discuss their new products. The facilitator could then restate the strategic objective, and then ask the facilitator, “Did we honor our commitment to “ask more of the planet?”
If the answer was “yes”, then it was a profitable meeting which helped to achieve this Key Strategic Objective. If the answer was negative, then the meeting team should have made adjustments to ensure this key concept was reflected in their next product development meeting.
Next: 10 tips to make your meeting memorable
MH #2 – Find out the Total Cost of all Meetings in Your Organization and CUT the Money Lovers
Complete an inventory of all your meetings
Affix an average cost-per meeting
Calculate the total cost of your meeting.
Give your CEO a tissue and wipe their eyes with it when they realize how much money is being wasted on poor meetings.
Here are some cost per meeting examples:
#1: A company with 25,000 employees where each employee attends 100 meetings per annum (2 meetings per week), at an estimated $500 per meeting.
Total meetings = 2,500,000
Meeting cost estimates = $500
TOTAL MEETING FEES PER YEAR = $1.250,000,000 (over 1 BILLION)
#2: A medium-sized business with 1000 employees. Each employee attends 50 meetings per annum (1 meeting per week), at an estimated cost $250 per meeting.
Total meetings = 50,000
Meeting cost estimates = $250
TOTAL MEETING FEES PER YEAR = $1.250,000 (over 1,000,000)
Is your company able to afford to spend so much on meetings?
Now. Now, estimate what you want.