To make more than just a lot of noise in your business, you have to have rhythm. The faster you want to grow, the faster your pulse must be. At the heart of team member performance is a rhythm of tightly run, daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and annual meetings – all of which happen as scheduled, without fail and with specific agendas.
These meetings give you the opportunity to keep your team members focused on what’s important. You’ll discover that you solve problems more quickly and easily, achieve better alignment around strategic decisions, and communicate more effectively.
Structured meetings enhance team performance!
With fast growth companies or those aspiring to grow quickly, the winners are those with leaders or owners who have established a rhythm and a routine of having meetings.
[quotesright]The faster the business is growing, the more meetings they have. [/quotesright] This may sound crazy to those of you who have worked for large corporations, where meetings are dreaded interruptions that eat up hours or even days.
What I am referring to are NOT those wide-open, poorly defined meetings, but the more effective short, punchy meetings with structure, time limits, and a specific agenda. [quotes]The later type of meetings leave everyone motivated, informed, and sets employees free.[/quotes]
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Take a look at the meeting rhythm of your company. Quarterly/annual meetings should be a given. However, to be effective, to hit your goals, and to grow at the rate you want you must have daily, weekly, and monthly meetings also. Why? Because these meetings’ agendas drive the deliverables required to hit the quarterly or monthly goals.
These meetings allow everyone to be on the same page, addressing issues, planning actions, and empowering employees to achieve goals and achieve stated benchmarks.
These meetings must be short (20 – 30 minutes) and:
- Have a structure,
- Be timely, and
- Have an effective agenda.
[quotes]If you – the business owner/leader – ever go into one of these meetings without all three well defined and implemented, you have just lost your team and have caused more harm than good. [/quotes]
Use these meetings to stay on top of your business progress and its rhythm and pulse. That will help you Work ON your Business vs. IN your business, but you must keep the agendas crisp and focused on the quarterly targets.
Not only is running a crisp meeting important, [quotesright]the faster your company is growing, the faster your meeting rhythm needs to be. [/quotesright] A suggestion is if your business is growing 15 percent each year, you can treat the year like a full 365 days from a strategic thinking and actions time frame.
Make These Improvements The Easy Way
If you would like to learn more about how to run effective meetings like these, you can read the book “Mastering the Rockefeller Habits,” by Verne Harnish or contact me. I’ll show you how we can guide you through this for your business.
However, if your business is growing 20 to 100 percent each year, you need to think of every quarter like a year from strategic thinking perspective. [quotes]This means putting a new strategy in place every 90 days[/quotes] as you continue to focus on the challenges and changes needed as your business growth soars. It’s like doubling the actions, issues, plans and timing to stay on track with the growth.
[quotesright]So now that we have the why and the what of what you need to do, how do you do it? [/quotesright] Here are a few helpful actions/ideas:
- Hold Daily/Weekly meetings. Set them up and run them for 30 minutes. Set the time at an irregular hour such as 8:07 AM or 4:33 PM. People tend to be more attentive to being on time when you do this.
- Meet wherever you want. However, do not have a comfortable cushy sitting arrangement. These meetings are crisp, punchy, and effective. Have the meeting in an area where the team is standing or sitting on stools. The breakroom, the lunch area, the boss’ office, the “floor” – anywhere where you keep the meeting sharp, crisp, and effective.
- Make attendance required at these meetings. If you have a morning staff and a different afternoon or evening staff, have two meetings. Both have same the message, same agenda, and same focus just with a second audience. [quotesright]A little time spent now will save you unmeasurable time later – we promise. [/quotesright]
- Pick someone who can run an effective, structured, punchy meeting. It may not be the owner. It may be the supervisor. It is more critical to be crisp, structured, and effective than to massage the ego of someone who doesn’t have the characteristics needed to run an effective meeting.
- This is critical. The agenda must inspire, drive, and provide motivation. [quotesright]It is not a tell-all or complaint session. [/quotesright] A suggested and effective agenda is:
- Good news: 5 minutes,
- The numbers: 5 minutes,
- Customer/employee feedback: 10 minutes, and
- One issue or “Big Rock” to address: 10 minutes.
Do not get caught up in trying to resolve or address all issues and items. [quotes]Pick one big issue per meeting to address and stay with it and resolve it.[/quotes] Then move on to the next “Big Rock.”
Closing. End each meeting with the attendees summarizing in one or two sentences their reaction to the meeting. [quotesright]This will tell you what message was received and about the buy-in or not from the team. [/quotesright]
This is an excellent strategy for beginning to change your business so you can WORK ON YOUR BUSINESS vs. IN YOUR BUSINESS.