I know a lot of people with a quite crowded calendar. This hasn’t to be a problem. Sometimes all of these meetings are valuable, but I think, for most of us, this is not true. I know that some of you are just going to these meetings, because you have to go to them (at least that is what YOU think), but they are a complete waste of time. Especially daily, weekly or monthly meetings are affected by this problem. Everybody is sitting around for 60 minutes, but in the end, there is no real outcome. Everybody is happy when they are over.
The next time you attend a meeting ask this simple question: “Why are we here? Why did we schedule this meeting?”. IMHO this is a really important question. If you are not able to answer it, it is a possible waste of time; for everybody sitting in the room. Don’t accept generic answers like “To exchange information” or “Because it’s our weekly status meeting”. Every meeting was scheduled for a special reason, if not it’s not worth the time you’re investing in it. One reason could be, that you want to decide what are the next important steps in your project, or you have to find a way to safe some money. As soon as you know why, put the answer on a flip chart or whiteboard. After you know the reason, start to define the goals you want to achieve, based on the reason of the meeting. These goals will lead you through your meeting, and help you to focus on why you are here.
Now you have a real chance that you’ll have a decent outcome after the meeting. Now you are able to check at the end of the meeting, that you met your goals. Maybe you are even able to finish the meeting, before the scheduled end. And last but not least, I’m sure you were able to delete some of your meetings from your calendar.