8 Ways to Fix Your Broken Monthly Meeting


business meeting. Professionals asked to present


How effective and productive is your monthly meeting?

I was often troubled by a particular pattern I saw in the monthly meeting. 

A typical monthly meeting would look something like this:

– Each person sitting in the same seat they always occupied.

– Each manager taking it in turns to update the room on their exhaustive list of Key Performance Indicators.

– Much of what each manager reported on was of little relevance of importance to everyone in the room.

– Every update sounded practically identical.

– The meeting was often dominated by the most senior person in the room

– Each update felt like a ‘floorshow’ for each manager to say how hard they had worked.

– The executive demonstrating how bright they were by challenging each manager or finding flaws in their presentation.

– A lack of engagement as the room knew that they were only really there to impress the most senior manager.

That was a long time ago

Of course, everything has changed since then; businesses don’t operate like that anymore.

Or do they?

Unfortunately I don’t believe it has changed too much.

We are often afforded the opportunity as part of our research, to ‘sit in’ on monthly meetings.

Despite size, brand or success many of these old patterns still exist today

Imagine just how much businesses would thrive and excel even further by challenging and breaking some of these unhelpful patterns.

It’s not that difficult

The leaders who have already disrupted the status quo are using their management’s time wisely, respectfully and productively.

They have changed the game and you can too

A monthly update is a chance to connect people in the team with the rest of the business.

It’s an opportunity to engage the team to achieve 4 key goals:

– Inspire confidence, belief and excitement in you and your team

– Enhance synergy across the business and break down silos

– Ensure clarity, understanding and to draw on support and help where needed

– Encourage and generate ideas and thinking that can propel you further and faster 

The solution

1. Make certain that everyone takes a different seat each month, including you.

2. Don’t let them present on every single KPI.

Focus on the ones where they are struggling and need help.

The ones they met that were a significant challenge that the business needs to learn from.

That doesn’t mean their other achievements get overlooked. Acknowledge and congratulate the manager before they give their update.

3. Everyone at that meeting should be sent a full update report in advance with all of the detail they need. Include a request to put forward significant questions, issues or concerns in advance. Cut down on the surprises.

4. Don’t go around the room in the same way you always do. 

5. Request that everything shared is relevant to the whole group. If it isn’t, take it outside of the meeting to the respective parties.

6. Encourage the team to think differently each month about how they present their update. The objective is to make it interesting and engaging.

7. Don’t let the same people dominate the meeting each month regardless of their seniority; that includes you.

8. Send everyone on a suitable presentations skills training course or coaching programme. Help them to craft and deliver their message with impact.

A bad monthly meeting can be very tedious and frustrating

If you need help communicating more effectively in your monthly meeting:

– Book yourself onto a powerful public speaking course.

– Invest in some really good one to one public speaking coaching.

– Get yourself some excellent presentation training

 Image: Courtesy of flickr.com

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