Sunday, December 8, 2019

Weekly Staff Meetings Are Simply an Excuse for Donuts

More than 50% of all your company meetings are those dreaded Staff Meetings and almost 75% of those meetings have no written agenda. The only thing attendees look forward to are the donuts.

The reason for scheduling these weekly snooze sessions is you think your business is running at a super fast pace and these meetings will keep everyone on the same page. More often the real reason is the meeting organizer simply wants to have something they can say they are in charge of.

And as we all know, one meeting usually leads to another meeting about a superfluous topic that has already been beaten to death.

Less than 25% of all meetings are Information Sharing donut fests. 20% of those meetings are Panic Meetings. These can include such topics as a competitor just stole your biggest builder, your top sales rep quit and took all his builders with him or maybe your biggest builder just canceled their orders.

And the length of time for each meeting is always between 30 and 60 minutes. That’s because all your smartphones only recognize 30 or 60 minute durations. How many of you have ever been in a staff meeting that only lasted 21 minutes? What in the hell are we supposed to do with the 9 minutes we saved. We already ate all the donuts.

The typical modular factory management staff attends more than 50 formal and informal meetings a month. Some are in-house and others are in the field. Some of them last more than 4 hours. Moreover, over 65 percent of attendees admit they do other work during meetings.

However the human brain is a marvelous machine that can multitask and refocus instantly if one of your keywords is mentioned during the snooze fest. An engineer may come out of their self imposed coma if words like “statistics, plans or material properties” are mentioned by someone.

Purgatory is real and it can be found in weekly staff meetings. You and your purgatory mates are waiting for the 60 minute alarm to sound on your smartphone so you can get a 30 minute reprieve before your phone sounds the 10 minute alarm that your next meeting is about to start.

Wouldn’t it be great if every Monday morning the boss would send out an email saying there will be no meetings this week because they trust your judgement and work ethic but if you have a problem, please drop in for a quick talk.

Donuts are in the break room. Enjoy.


Anonymous said...

You must have been in quite a few sales meetings to understand how frustrating they are. Personally I like chocolate covered chocolate doughnuts best. I just checked my phone for this weeks meetings and found 6, each scheduled for 60 minutes. This is very spooky.

Anonymous said...

Only one company I worked at had productive written agenda meetings that were limited to 30 minutes with any critical items handled with responsible parties after the 30 minutes and even those were agenda driven with statement and resolution actions written before the staff meeting.

As a executive VP I scheduled written 15 minute agenda meetings Tues and Thurs am to identify issues

Marta said...

Sometimes I wonder where you get your information.

Coach said...

Marta, as long as you enjoy them, I'll keep finding interesting things to write about. BTW, I'm writing this while eating a donut at my one-man weekly meeting.

Anonymous said...

Nightmare time... I do remember sitting in sales meetings that were so long...How long you ask...we had a send out for lunch menu and then SEND OUT FOR DINNER MENU....and all this time our cell phones were to be TURNED OFF....

needless to say...that company is GONE....

Anon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.