It’s obvious that bad meetings need to stop. But justifying if a meeting is necessary is easier said than done. To help us confidently arrive at the conclusion that a meeting is required, Elizabeth Grace Saunders, author of How to Invest Your Time Like Money, proposes four easy questions:
“Have I thought through this situation?”If not: Set aside some time with yourself to do some strategic thinking. During that time you can evaluate the scope of the project, the current status, the potential milestones, and lay out a plan of action for making meaningful progress.
“Do I need outside input to make progress?”If you find yourself in this place, don’t schedule a meeting; update your to-do list and take action instead.
“Does moving forward require a real-time conversation?”It’s much more efficient for everyone involved if you send over items that they can look at on their own (while you’re not awkwardly watching them read during an in-person meeting) and then shoot you back feedback.
“Does this necessitate a face-to-face meeting?”An online chat can help you answer questions quickly, or for more in-depth conversations, scheduling a phone call or video conference can work well.
- “Have you fully thought through this situation without me?
- “Do you need my specific input to move this forward?”
- “Do we need to have this conversation in real-time?”
- “Do we need to meet face-to-face, or can we do this this online?”