Ask #Better Questions, Go to A Better Meeting

Ask #Better Questions, Go to A Better Meeting

Scheduled to attend a meeting soon?

(Who isn’t, right?) If you start asking #Better questions, I can 99.999% guarantee you’ll find yourself in different, and often better, #meetings.

There are 21 Get Momentum members at a university in Birmingham, Alabama. Along with members in 11 countries and 27 states, they are learning to Lead and Attend a Better Meeting.

(Click here for a :47 second video…)

Recently, someone sent me a link an article on how “professors” spend their time. Take a minute and read it yourself. If you’re not a professor, replace that title with YOUR job title and see what you feel…

The Long, Lonely Job of Homo academicus

“The most surprising finding of our analysis of practices was that faculty spent approximately 17 percent of their workweek days in meetings. These meetings included everything from advising meetings with students (which could be considered part of teaching or service depending on the department) to committee meetings that have a clear service function.”

I have two IMMEDIATE responses to this statistic…

FIRST: There are 168 hours in a week.

Of those “most” professionals are going to agree that they will be asleep a minimum of 35-50 hours a week (5-6 hours a night, with longer stretches on weekends).

Next, most people would agree that they need some “Maslow” time; time to care for their own needs: Physical, Mental, Emotional, Spiritual.

And, most people would say that they need to dedicate time to their families, their friends, their community…

And then you… You Awesome Professors… there is another HUGE chunk of time that you’ll dedicate to:

  • Planning
  • Teaching
  • Grading
  • Meeting with students

THEN…of course and then…

Those “meetings.”

I think the MOST important thing to consider is your own personal definition of a meeting. What is a meeting, to you? How do YOU define it? Because by your definition that 17% is either wrong…or wildly wrong!

You see, here at Get Momentum we define a meeting as:

Any time two or more people come together and talk, and one or more of those two people walks away with a task.

IF any one of you were to consider driving your child to school and getting asked to buy them art supplies for a project…

  • If you talk with your spouse at night about the upcoming weekend plans…
  • If you see a student in the cafeteria and they ask you to provide them with information…
  • If you’re in a department meeting, a staff meeting, a university meeting…

You get the point. You’re in meetings a LOT more than 17% of your day.

SECOND: Don’t try to “shrink that percentage.”

Ready for THIS paradox:

I’d LOVE to be in MORE meetings.

I’d love to be talking with more people; about the right things; looking for ways to further my mission; placing myself in situations where forward “momentum” is not just discussed, but actually happening.

This is NOT the right way to look at it; don’t ask “How do I go to fewer meetings?

Instead, I want you to ask yourself TWO questions:

1. How do I get invited AND/OR create more of the RIGHT meetings?
2. How do I GET from and GIVE to the most effective meetings I can put myself in?

Look gang, I know you’re busy…

IF you’re already a Get Momentum member, you have a HUGE opportunity this month if  you will fill out the matrix on page TWO of this month’s Course Work (here).

And, if you want to get the MOST from this month’s Course Work, be sure to download that PDF, and this MP3:


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