Andy Stanley said, “The best thing a leader can bring to his team is his energy.” (quoting Bill Hybels)… another reason that I’d encouraged you to Ho‘ohui: Huddle up, and Bring back the staff meeting:
Having regularly scheduled staff meetings has become a no-no, something we avoid like the plague in workplaces. Why?
Boycotting staff meetings is absurd. Meetings are not a problem dear manager; bad meetings are. And make no mistake; you need them.
The solution is simple: Have good meetings!
I left that last statement as is, so how so? How do you have a good meeting?
Photo credit: “God, I hope we get to perform this sometime” by Nosha on Flickr
To have the noun, define the verb
I think you have to very simply define that word ‘meeting’ by thinking about why you have them at all. Fact of the matter is that meetings exist in organizational structures like some brick or pillar which has been in the building forever, but is no longer foundational or even functional. It’s just there as part of the cultural auto-pilot.
I talked about this a little bit with David Zinger, the employee engagement guru, and he said that if he was chairing a meeting, he’d be sure to “Sit at the same level, be part of the circle, listen to all voices, care about relationships and results.”
That tells me David wants to really hear from the people there with him: He is starting with his why. Starting that way takes him directly to his action verbs as a leader.
From a contextual standpoint, a good meeting is a great conversation involving more people. I like to keep it simple, and define meetings that way because it reminds me to honor the conversation part and make sure it is ever-present in my meeting agendas. It helps me treat each meeting as a brand new event — who is coming? i.e. Who are my guests? — so that I focus on individuals versus audience.
But those are my whys, and it’s okay if your energy-creating (leading) or energy-channeling (managing) why is different: Just be sure it is intentional.
So this posting is not going to offer you a listing of all the elements that go into constructing a great meeting agenda: that would be condescending I think. As an Alaka‘i Manager you can take care of content. My advice is to define your why.
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My mana‘o [The Backstory of this posting]
Each Thursday I write a management posting for Say “Alaka‘i” at Hawai‘i’s newspaper The Honolulu Advertiser. If this is the first you have caught sight of my Say “Alaka‘i” tagline, you can learn more on this Talking Story page: About Say “Alaka‘i”. There are some differences in this Talking Story version, most notably that all links will keep you here on this blog.