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Are Company Meetings a Waste of Time?

meetings productivityMeetings have fallen out of favor in recent years as a waste of time and company resources.  And rightfully so to a degree – most companies do not conduct meetings well.  Meetings are being replaced by the newest trends and technologies (see 5 Communication Tools for Your Business).  However, when conducted the right way, meetings can be a very effective way to make sure your company is on-track with its service, sales, and meeting goals.

ComRes recently started implementing the EOS Traction method of running our company. A key element is in what EOS refers to as the ‘Level 10’ Meeting.  You can read about this in the book Traction or download it from the EOS web site

Key elements of a Level 10 meeting are:

Agenda – have an agenda in advance for every meeting

Established dates/times – Level 10 meetings are always on the same date/time (e.g. each Friday at noon, first Monday of every month at 9 a.m.).  They have an established start/end time, and they always start on time, and end on time (this is difficult – it requires planning, diligence and willpower).

Scorecard – A section of the agenda goes over the scorecard for that department’s activities so everybody knows if they are on-track or off-track.

Rocks – Rocks are serious issues or goals that must be solved in 90 days.  Each person has Rocks (usually between 1-3).  In these meetings, the Rock owners quickly state where they are at in completing their Rock.  Rocks are the important things that must be done to help achieve your company’s goals.

Issues – Issues can be very simple (need to order supplies, fix a copier, etc.), or they can be more complex such as hiring employees, converting to a new software application, etc.  They can be things that can be solved in under a week or may require 1-2 years.  The method EOS uses to resolve issues is called IDS (Identify, Discuss, Solve).  When used effectively, IDS will help solve issues quickly, develop rocks, or provide input for company goals.

Open/Close – There are variations of this, but we open and close each meeting with a 1-word opener on how each member feels.  At the close, we also ask members to rate the effectiveness of the meeting from 1-10, and state what did and didn’t work.

ComRes has 3 weekly meetings we have used for some time for Sales, Operations (WIP or Work in Progress) and Finance/Admin.  Our meetings are highly effective – things get done, key people are in-the-loop, goals are met and the company improves.  When used properly, meetings can be a very effective tool in running your company, but without discipline, they can have the opposite effect.

Make your company meetings a way to grow and improve your business.