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Give yourself a “Meeting-ectomy”

Meeting-ectomy is a word I invented last summer. When I first said it to my daughter, Sophia, she pondered for a moment and said, “You got rid of your meetings?”

Yes, I decided that I had too many meetings at work every day, and it actually prevented me from getting any meaningful work done. Do you feel that way sometimes?

I got concerned about all my meetings when my co-worker, Aldo, told me that in business school, they call meetings “The Monster,” and warn graduates to beware of them when they get out into the real work world. The Monster takes over and you can’t get anything done.

So, after a frustrating week of feeling like I was getting nothing done, I declared that I was giving myself a Meeting-ectomy.

Here’s how I did it:

1. First I let all my direct reports know that I was cancelling our weekly meetings, permanently. I let them know that I trusted them to do their work and empowered them to get things done on their own. They could come to me for guidance and we would continue to talk, but only when there was something important. No more regular weekly meetings. (I put this all in an email so I didn’t have to have another meeting!)

2. I decided to identify my top three priorities for the balance of the year. I wrote them down. Then, I sent an email to all my work colleagues and shared those top priorities with them. (That way they knew what I was working on and could support me.)

3. I let everyone know that I would move any needed meetings to only one day of the week. I chose Friday, which is casual day at my company. So in jeans, I could handle a day of meetings, if needed.

I tried it first for about six weeks to see how I survived without regular meetings. Funny thing happened. I loved it! All my people loved it! I got all my work done.

And the best part was that the bottom line of my company improved… and I felt good about my accomplishments.

So, if you are currently feeling like you aren’t accomplishing enough, consider a meeting-ectomy. Or, if you know of someone who SHOULD have a Meeting-ectomy, please pass this blog along to them.

Meetingless in California,

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