I received a picture on the cost of rework on an organization and it brought to my mind a more generalized view on how much wasted time costs an organization. One area of waste is ineffective meetings. I don’t have anything against meetings if they are effective. But there seems to be a general consensus that we all have some percentage of time spent on ineffective meetings.
This calculation is straightforward. Just replace “Percentage of time spent on unnecessary rework” with anything that wastes your time and you can see how much money ineffective meetings cost the firm. Unlike other tech productivity initiatives which require significant investment, running effective meetings are something we can act on almost immediately.
Many of you have probably experienced all of the scenarios in the meeting picture above.
And you probably know all these tips to having effective meetings.
Personally, I look at a few things. I ask myself what happens if I don’t show up to this meeting? If I am not needed to input into this meeting, my time is better served to get the meeting minutes after the meeting. I consider this when I invite other people to a meeting. I expect them to participate. If they are interested party but not needed for input, I will send them meeting minutes afterword’s.
Pre-socialization of the meeting agenda topics is also important. It is usually not a good idea to expect people to input into a decision immediately after they are “surprised” with an issue. Ahead of the meeting, people can gather their thoughts and due diligence ahead of meeting. This reduces wasted time reacting to a new issue at the meeting and let’s the meeting stakeholders have a well thought out response. Importantly, pre-socialization allows the meeting presenter to prepare better for presenting the issue.
There are many other suggestions on running effective meetings, but I feel these few suggestions are a good starting point to have an effective meeting.