5 Meeting Killers To Avoid – Killer # 5 – Insufficient Data

This blog post is the fifth in a five part series that covers the top 5 meeting killers that are the root causes of most ineffective meetings that we all are forced to suffer through. By combating these 5 meeting killers you can realize tremendous improvements in your meeting effectiveness and reduce the amount of time that you and your coworkers spend in meetings.

Consider these questions:

  1. How many meetings do you conduct each week, month or year?
  2. How many total meetings are conducted within your organization each week, month or year?
  3. How many person hours are consumed in these meetings?
  4. What content is generated in these meetings that is moving your business forward?  How to you capture, organize, and process this content?
  5. What levels in the organization are attending the meetings?How often do they attend? How often do they fail to attend?
  6. What percentage of your meetings are collaborative and drive actions and decisions versus being purely informational?
  7. Are you tracking status of after meeting actions? How many are completed on time? How many fall through the cracks?

Young businessman painting graphs and diagrams with brush

Virtually no organization can answer all of these questions accurately. Minimal insight into the actual activities of our meetings is a key reason there has been such little improvement in the meeting process. For most organizations, the typical gauge for meeting success is how people feel about the meeting when it ends. Curiously, we rely on anecdotal emotional reaction to evaluate our meeting productivity.

Without a quantitative way to track and assess meeting performance, it’s no wonder that we’ve languished in improving the productivity of our meetings. In the words of the great management consultant Peter Drucker “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.” There’s a really good reason that most people keep a scale in the bathroom. Whether or not we like the results, we are motivated to improve when we have a measurement of our performance (that is, data). Data, then, is a key ingredient in the recipe for ongoing meeting improvement. Yet its absence in today’s meetings is a meeting killer.

How do you assess what is going on in your meetings and how do you determine if they are productive or not?

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