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12 Ways to Make Your Next Meeting Your Worst Meeting

Studies show that we spend about 15 percent of our work week in meetings. If you’re lucky, right? Many of these meetings are a huge waste of time … and money.

We thought we’d list some ways to make sure the next meeting you run is a bad one:

#1 – Call a meeting even if you don’t have anything to discuss.
Better yet, just call a meeting on the fly because an important issue has come up for you, and you need answers now! It’s important to you so it must be the most important thing for everyone else.

#2 – If in doubt about whether someone should attend the meeting, invite them.

Or just call an all staff meeting, even if it only affects a small percentage of the group. It may be peripheral to their jobs, but they should hear it anyway!

#3 – Make your agenda so vague that no one knows what the meeting is about.

Don’t distribute it in advance so people can come to the meeting prepared. Keep them in the dark about what’s going to be discussed. The best way to do this – don’t have an agenda at all.

#4 – Don’t start the meeting on time.
Or up the ante … don’t be on time for your own meeting. It doesn’t matter if everyone is waiting for you. Your time is more valuable than theirs.

#5 – Kick off the meeting on a negative note.
Tell everyone how bad things are. Look for scapegoats – call them out in front of their peers. People just love that.

#6 – Don’t stick to the schedule.
Or don’t have a schedule at all. Who really cares when this meeting will be over? Nothing is more important than your meeting. Nobody else has anything to do.

#7 – Don’t ever defer a conversation to a later date.
Even if a point of discussion starts eating into precious time, keep it on the table. It was on your agenda, so it must be dealt with today. The meeting can either go long or you can just give the other points less attention.

#8 – Do most of the talking.
Don’t plan for participation. People love to hear you talk. Dominate the conversation. There’s no need for you to listen during a meeting. That’s certainly won’t help solve any problems.

#9 – When someone presents an idea, be quick to shoot them down.
There will be no free flow of ideas in your meeting! You’re in control. Who do they think they are anyway?

#10 – No matter how long your meeting runs, don’t take any breaks.
People love to just sit and sit and sit. It’s best to introduce new ideas to your staff or try to find the solution to an ongoing problem after they feel lethargic from a lack of activity. And of course, no one needs to use the restroom.

#11 – Let that guy (or gal), who loves to hear himself (or herself) talk, go on and on.
Don’t cut them off. Don’t bring the meeting back to its focus.

#12 – Make sure nothing gets accomplished.
When the meeting is finally over, there should be no plans for action, no decisions should have been made, no issues should get resolved, and no follow up should be scheduled. People love sitting around in meetings that don’t accomplish anything.

Our bigg quote today is by Steve Kaye:

“An employee who needs permission to buy a box of paperclips can spend
tens of thousands of dollars worth of employee time on bad meetings.”

Waste is waste … whether it’s paper clips or time.

What are your pet peeves about meetings? Leave a Comment and let us know.

 

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5 Tips to Prepare for Your Next Meeting

By Bigg Success Staff
05-28-08

Leadership Skills

meeting 

It seems that meetings consume more and more of our time these days. In many cases, people come away feeling like the meeting was a waste of time.

As a leader, you want any meeting you run to be productive. So the next time you’re called upon to run a meeting, keep this in mind:

For every minute the meeting is scheduled to run,
plan to spend at least that much time preparing for it.

In other words, for a meeting that will last an hour, plan to prepare for at least an hour.

As the person running the meeting, it’s your responsibility to make sure the purpose of the meeting is fulfilled. One of the primary reasons why meetings fail is because of a lack of preparation. The best meetings happen before they ever start.

Here are 5 tips for effective meeting preparation:

Be specific
Almost nothing bores people more than a bunch of vague concepts that have no tangible value to them in their jobs. Plan to keep your meeting focused on real things that will make a difference to them today.

Cover new ground
Just rehashing the same old topics meeting after meeting doesn’t have any value. Plan to cover subjects that haven’t been tackled before. Move to new areas to keep your people interested.

Stay on subject
Know what you want to accomplish before the meeting starts so you’re able to keep the conversation moving in that direction. Clearly understand the purpose of each part of your agenda so you can keep things moving along to your ultimate goal.

Plan for participation
If you don’t, you’re unlikely to get any. Know when you want your people to get actively involved. Also plan your response if they don’t step up. Thinking about this beforehand is essential. It’s also important to plan how you will keep their conversation going by mapping out some follow-up questions.

Expect distracting maneuvers

There’s at least one in every crowd … that person who loves to hear himself or herself talk. Plan in advance how you will deal with him or her to keep your conversation moving to your ultimate purpose. This isn’t easy, but it’s perhaps the most important thing you can do to keep everyone engaged in your meeting.

Hear today's lesson and laugh on The Bigg Success Show.

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Distance Doesn’t Mean You Can’t Stay Close with Old Friends

By Bigg Success Staff
05-28-08

Work – Life Balance

coffee

Do you have long-time friends that you have trouble keeping in touch with as regularly as you might like?

Here’s an idea – schedule a "telecoffee" or a "teletea" meeting.

Plan a time when each of you can take a little break. Grab your cup of coffee or tea and you’re ready! Then hook up via phone, live chat, or text messaging.

We admit it’s not the same as being together in person. However, it’s the next best thing because you can still carry on a two-way conversation.

You’ll be able to quickly catch up on what’s going on with each other. You can share advice. You can talk about whatever you want to talk about.

The good part is that you don’t even have to drive anywhere to do it.  The best part is that you’ll be able to maintain a close connection with someone about whom you really care.

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Understand Your Patterns to Make Your Time Off More Valuable

By Bigg Success Staff
04-30-08

Work – Life Balance 

freshen_up

Horse trainers “freshen” their horses. That’s lingo for a horse getting a vacation. Fresh horses are filled with their energy and ready to race again!

However, they have different patterns getting back to the race. Some immediately come back strong. Others need a couple of runs to hit their full stride again.

Just like trainers learn to know what to expect after their horse gets some needed rest, we also need to understand our own patterns.

Do you need a long break or a series of shorter ones?
Some people are so stressed by the time they take a break that a short one just won’t do. They never get past the stress so they can relax and enjoy their time off.

If that describes you, then take a long vacation!

Others get more stressed if they’re away from their normal routine too long. They start worrying about getting further and further behind so they don’t relax.

If you’re one of these people, take a series of long weekends.

Do you need a day or two to get back in the swing of things after a break?

Some people get back from vacation, whether long or short, and are immediately ready to jump into daily life again.

Others need to time to phase in. If you need to do this, plan your vacation so you get an extra day or two to “unwind from unwinding”. If that’s not possible, try to schedule your daily routine a little lighter for your first day or two back in “the real world”.

Are there certain times of the year when you really need some time off?

Some of us have extremely busy seasons. A break immediately after the season is often the best medicine! You’ll be able to push through, knowing that some needed time off is on the horizon.

Another example is people who live in areas where the winter months are cold, long and dreary. Knowing that they have some time away in the sun is just the prescription to cure their winter blues.

Start by learning your patterns and preferences. Then schedule yourself accordingly. You’ll find that you’re more productive when you do this, both at work and at home.

Hear today's lesson and laugh on The Bigg Success Show. 

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Start a Dinner Club with Your Friends

By Bigg Success Staff
04-22-08

Work – Life Balance

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Would you like to see your good friends more often?

Here’s an idea – start a dinner club!

Before you think that’s a crazy idea, allow us to clarify what we’re talking about. We’re not talking about taking turns hosting a dinner at your house. Although, you can do that if you want.

We’re saying organize a regular time to go out for dinner with your friends. Figure out how often you’d like to get together and make it a regular event.

For example, you may meet on the first Wednesday of every month for dinner at a certain restaurant at a specified time.

Obviously, not everyone will be able to make it every time. However, by getting together on a set day, you and your friends will find it easier to schedule around it.

4 things to keep in mind

  • Keep it simple.
    Unless someone volunteers to coordinate things, you may just decide to meet at the same place every month. Of course, it’s completely up to your group.
  • Don’t make it cumbersome.
    That’s why we used the “once a month” example above. However, if your friends seem to want to get together more often, by all means go for it.
  • Be considerate of everyone’s budget.
    Don’t go to the priciest place in town if you know you have friends who will struggle to afford it. The point is to spend time with people you care about, right?
  • Determine the “rules”.
    While there should be few of these, you should discuss them upfront to align expectations and avoid uncomfortable situations later. For example, can you bring guests? If your group has kids, will they be invited as well?

If you want to keep it simple, a standing dinner event allows you to get together with your friends without a lot of upfront time. Wouldn’t you rather spend your time with them instead of planning how to meet up with them?

Hear today's lesson and laugh on The Bigg Success Show. 

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