Strip #3: “Your ability to get an entire group of people off track and into the weeds so quickly will be missed”
Right. Well, can’t say I didn’t see this one coming.
Meetings are funny things. You can make agendas, set ground rules, and choose outstanding facilitators, and they will still grow legs once in a while and wander off. Then there’s guys like me who occasionally feel the need to grab the wheel, swing left on the first unmarked road, and take the team off on a little off-road jaunt. A sure sign that I’m getting bored.
I do have the best of intentions. I have a bright group of analysts and they thrive on entertainment. I am an entertainer at heart and the temptation is often just too great. This isn’t always a pure distraction. When I see that things are getting a bit too serious and that rigidity is creeping into the conversation, a good story does a lot to reset everyone back to a more neutral frame of mind.
You don’t have to put on a song and dance for breaks like these to be effective. I often use this time for training, on topics that range from basic leadership, to logical analysis, to policy development, communication, critical thinking, and team building. I’ve had a lot of money spent on me for both formal and informal training and these are great opportunities to share that education with my team. Before I’m done, I try to aim the subject matter back towards the task at hand and we generally settle right back on track.
Bottom line: Agendas and team focus are essential to the success of any meeting, but don’t be afraid to let things spin out into the dunes once in awhile.
-These quotes are from a jar that my team presented me as I was leaving to accept a promotion. They are the impressions, thoughts, and ideas that they had come to associate with me during my time there. I’ve decided to share them, and what I remember of how they came to be, with my readers as I draw them at random-