I took a few lessons in Oprah's playbook. I do not like to sit in meetings, especially on a Monday. I really don't like meetings that have a bad start i.e. waiting until everyone shows up.. then it is 10 minutes after..oh and unrelated topics that pop up. The dreaded "since I have you here" move that turns the group's agenda into a personal one. I will admit it, I am probably the one who is texting and emailing while the meeting struggles to flow.
How can you make sure your meetings are as productive -- and focused -- as possible?
Take a page from Oprah Winfrey's playbook.
Brendon Burchard, the author of High Performance Habits: How Extraordinary People Become That Way, says Oprah starts every meeting the same way: She says:
"What is our intention for this meeting? What's important? What matters?"
Why does she start a meeting that way?
High performers constantly seek clarity. They work hard to sift out distractions so they can not just focus, but continually re-focus, on what is important.
Asking the right questions is everything.
That's why no meeting agenda should include words like "information," "recap," " review," or "discussion." Productive meetings often have one-sentence agendas like, "Determine the product launch date" or "Select software developer for database redesign."
"Information"? Share it before the meeting. If you need to make a decision during a meeting, shouldn't the group have the information they need ahead of time? Send documents, reports, etc., to participants in advance. Holding a meeting to share information is a terrible intention: It's unproductive, wastes everyone's time, and it's lazy.
Great meetings result in decisions: What. Who. When.
Clear direction. Clear accountability.
That's how Oprah gets things done.
Let the Good times roll!