How to Stop ‘Dumb’ Meetings at Work

3025475_mThere are four types of meetings that you’ll be having in your team. The type of meeting you’ll be having will ultimately build the contra and results of your team. The distinctions between these types of meetings can be small; but even though they are small, they can have a huge impact.

Through sitting in a meeting in your organisation, you can actually get a temperature check for the engagement level and culture of the organisation. Meetings build organisational culture; this is why making sure you create dynamic meetings is essential to a dynamic culture.

The four types of meetings are:

Screen Shot 2013-03-19 at 8.00.31 AM.png1. Dead – This is the type of meeting where people are not talking, discussing or debating ideas (one person is speaking during the entire meeting) but they are talking about the correct topics in the right context.

2. Distracted – These types of meeting are when people are engaged and are debating ideas vigorously. However, they are talking about the wrong topics.

3. Dumb – These types of meetings are where there is no discussion or debate and the topic is in the wrong contextual place.

4. Dynamic – These types of meetings are where discussion and debate are happening at a vigorous level and everyone is talking about the right ideas in the right type of meeting.

Use this diagram to identify where most of your meetings are sitting currently.


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1 Comment
  • Anne Walder
    Posted at 01:37h, 19 March Reply

    Hi Colin, my extensive experience with all types of meetings relates well to yr diagram. Our team even went to the extent of organizing workshops across the entire network on “How to Teleconference” as many t/confs went off the rails depending on who was in attendance. People dynamics more often than not dominated the whole event. The key common factors in my opinion were: how the Chair conducted the meeting; meeting objectives were strategically prior to the t/conf; and clearly stated by the Chair at the start. A recent piece of research I did noted: “stakeholder engagement is integral to the success of all projects (regardless of size). Too often, relationships with stakeholders are managed in an informal or intuitive way…..which is the most common cause of project failure” My recent participation in an OH&S course underlined “consult and communicate” as major key factors for positive outcomes in the workplace. I already knew that of course, but interesting how so many people overlook this important factor, including the aspect of stakeholder relationship management and building relations with and between all levels of the workplace.
    Thanks for the opportunity to comment.

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