Most Meetings are Muda

Posted on April 29, 2006  Comments (4)

Most Meetings are Muda (Waste) from Got Boondoggle:

I will not waste your time and regurgitate all the expert based meeting protocols like following an established agenda, having a meeting plan, taking meeting notes, etc. All these ideas are great and work well. Instead, I have a list of a few meeting musts that may guide you to more productive meeting time.

The post provides good tips on what to avoid. Given how many people know that many meetings are a waste of time, taking steps to improve meeting effectiveness is a good way to gain some credibility for management improvement activities. Doing so is very visible. Unfortunately, even with the simple and good ideas on how to do better – many meetings that are full of waste.

Here are some good tips from 37 folders; 9 tips for running more productive meetings:

Follow up – If you have been utilizing a project manager or note taker (and God knows you should), be sure to use a few minutes at the end for him or her to review any major new projects or action items that were generated in the meeting. Have the PM email the list of resolved and new action items to all the participants.

This is an important step missed far too often. Doing so helps make sure that everyone leaving he meeting has the same understanding of what has been decided: in addition to reviewing new assignments I would suggest review all significant decisions made. Far too often, people have very different ideas on what happened in previous meetings.

The Team Handbook also has good information on running effective meetings.

Curious Cat Management Improvement Dictionary: Muda definition

4 Responses to “Most Meetings are Muda”

  1. Curious Cat Management Improvement Blog » Management Improvement Carnival #25
    December 17th, 2007 @ 8:38 am

    […] Meeting Rules by David Maister – “1) Do not call meetings when some other form of information sharing is possible. 2) Since most people can read ten times faster than a presenter can speak, send material ahead. 3) Meetings need to have concrete goals” (previous curiouscat post: Most Meetings are Muda) […]

  2. Curious Cat » What Motivates Programmers?
    February 22nd, 2008 @ 8:49 am

    “Programmers see meetings as wastes of time. Most communication between programmers is done via email or by a quick wander to another desk to clarify something that is beyond the scope of an email.”

  3. CuriousCat: Pleasing Customers
    March 10th, 2008 @ 8:55 am

    You need to provide customers what they want, which is not the same thing as what they say they want. Southwest Airlines is a good example…

  4. Curious Cat Management Improvement Blog » Meeting Like Google
    August 12th, 2010 @ 6:59 am

    […] Also definitely read: Most Meetings are Muda and meeting advice from 37 signals […]

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