These 3 tips will reduce the time you spend in meetings, and significantly increase your output.
Meetings have become far too prominent, and they have reduced a lot of people’s time that they could be spent actually doing the work.
Some are unavoidable, but many are just poor organizations. Here are some tips to help you reduce the unnecessary ones, using new-age software tools.
Write down the reason for the call whenever someone “grabs you for 5 minutes” (it’s never 5 minutes).
- What information are they trying to get from you?
- Are they coming to you because you haven’t covered the information elsewhere? Do they know where to find the answer but have forgotten where to look?
- There are plenty of other questions you can ask, but think about whether this is a conversation that can be automated if they have access to the right information at the right time
- Audit your time, you likely will find a lot of these meetings could be easily translated to another medium
Oftentimes, the information exists somewhere in your company, for example, I work in HR and people often ask how to open a workday requisition to hire a new employee.
I had a look around and realized all the documentation was:
a.) difficult to follow
b.) outdated (in its content and method of teaching)
What did I do? I simply went and created a short video using (https://www.loom.com/ I only have the free version at the moment) which took 2 minutes giving them a voice-over video tutorial on how to open a req.
The feedback for this was very positive, people would prefer to follow succinct instructions than have to ring you up each time — it gets embarrassing and then they stop doing it, and then things can go wrong. They can replay it as many times as they want (either now or in the future). Make one, to send to as many stakeholders as you need.
Similar to the SaaS model of make once, sell infinitely.
Be stronger about declining meetings.
Ask for a reason for the meeting, and make sure it is something that really needs to be discussed in a meeting, not via one very well-worded email.
PowerPoint () allows you to record slides now. Keep individual slides with recordings on, most people only need 1–3 takeaways from a 30-minute presentation. To be honest, they won’t remember much more, just send them in a video presentation that you upload to SharePoint.
Don’t be afraid to ask for this, even if the person you are asking this of is very senior. They will respect you more, and give off the impression, if done correctly, that you have many important things to do. Often they will just say, you are not needed in the meeting.