The biggest breakthroughs in business usually come from the confines of a meeting.

As facilitators and meeting leaders, we try to squeeze that orange for all its worth.  Only experience teaches us how to remove the pulp to reach innovation.  

We discuss how to do that in episode 124 of the Meeting Leadership Podcast.  Along with the reasons why you should standardize your meetings, we also provide a few strategies to get you started.

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00:00 – Show Opening

As a meeting leader, would you agree that great meetings are absolutely rare? And why is it that we can’t kind of capture the essence of what happens in great meetings, and do that more often? We’ll, if you’re looking for some inspiration to do just this, then stick around, because today, we’re going to talk about why standardizing the process of business meetings can be very, very profitable.

Are you a professional who wants to become a more effective leader? Then get ready for practical tips from the coach, with the experience and inspiration to help you succeed in any leadership situation. You’re listening to The Meeting Leadership Podcast with Gordon Shepherd.

00:48 – Podcast content starts here!

Welcome to another episode of the meeting leadership podcast. My name is Gordon Shepherd. I want to say thanks for being here, and let me take a moment again to remind people why I call it The Meeting Leadership Podcast. Now, I believe that great meetings are the building blocks of great organizations, and if you can be a great meeting leader and lead a great meeting, then, in essence, you’re actually going to be building up your organization. And that will flow through directly to your customers and your community because you’ll be in the best position to serve them at the highest possible level. It all starts here with getting another leadership skill, another way to improve your meetings incrementally the next time you go out, and that impact will be felt all the way to your end users and your community. So, it’s a big idea and you’re here on the podcast to get tips to help you to do just that. It is great to have you here.

01:40 – The elusive great meeting

And on today’s show, we’re going to be talking about how to capture a unicorn, as in the elusive great meeting. Most of us have experienced it. In fact, if I look back over my career, I can tell you, honestly, that I figure I’ve either run or participated in more than 2000 meetings. And in those meetings, how many unicorns occurred? I would say a handful. You know, there’s a lot of decent ones, a bunch of bad ones, in the corporate world especially, but those ones that are rare, the ones that are really memorable, are the ones that I’m really interested in today. And that’s why the episode’s topic is called, “Effective Meetings: Why Standardizing the Process of Business Meetings is Highly Profitable.”

02:20 – The biggest breakthroughs occur in great meetings

And what happens when we have a great meeting? Our biggest breakthroughs occur, our relationships, they really strengthen, we get more done, we have a higher rate of retention amongst our best people. And if great meetings are that valuable and they actually impact the bottom line, what can you do to actually kind of harness it and really take advantage of it? And to help you do this, let me give you a few questions that will help the process move forward the next time a great meeting occurs in your organization.

02:43 – Question 1: What was on the agenda?

And the first question is, “What was on that agenda, and do you have a copy of that agenda that you can then bring forward to start to form an agenda template to recreate the conditions that were there?” On the agenda, hopefully, you’re going to see a list of the people that were actually in that meeting. When you look at those people in that moment, what were their competencies? What were the things that they were bringing to the table? Was it a diverse group of people? Were their kind of senior leaders and junior people in the room? Or was it all sort of at the senior level? Who was there and how did they come together to create that great meeting situation?

03:26 – Question 2: Who was the meeting facilitator and what did he or she do?

And, of course, if there was a great meeting agenda, there had to be a wonderful meeting facilitator in that moment. Think back then to what were the things that facilitator was doing during the meeting? Did they have a high level of emotional intelligence? Were they able to almost orchestrate, be a conductor and really allow the people on the team to do the right things at the right moment? So, when the talker was talking too much, they slowed them down, and when the quiet person needed to make a bigger contribution, they really helped them to do just that.

And I really hope that after you start to answer these types of questions, you ask your own questions, and you come up with really your own standardization process. And for some people, that may end up looking like a textbook, and for others it may be just two, three things that they carry forward into their next meeting and the meeting after that, that really allow them to create gold mines in every meeting that they are in.

04:22 – MLP 122: Why Leaders Need To Fail Faster So They Can Have Better Meetings – https://meetingleadershipinc.com/122

And if you’d like even more inspiration when it comes to standardizing the process of business meetings, then check out episode 122 on The Meeting Leadership Podcast. It’s called, “Why Leaders Need To Fail Faster So They Can Have Better Meetings.” And in there you’re getting ideas from a scrappy startup point of view, where you’re very agile. You’re testing things, failing and succeeding, testing, failing, failing, testing, failing and succeeding, because we all know the value of a great meeting, whether it’s dollars or people or whatever that is, and I know that episode 122 is going to help you put that into action, and you can get that episode by going to meetingleadershipinc.com/122.

05:03 – Meeting Leadership Academy – https://meetingleadershipinc.com/academy

And I also want to let you know that this episode of The Meeting Leadership Podcast is brought to you by The Meeting Leadership Academy. Now, there, you’re going to find some really terrific live training options for you as an individual to become a better meeting leader. Also, for your team. If you’re looking for custom training to really take it up a notch when it comes to having better meetings, you’ll find that there, and there’s some terrific online training options as well. And you can get all of that by going to meetingleadershipinc.com/academy.

And for everybody who’s listening, especially the subscribers, I want to let you know there’s a format change coming up to The Meeting Leadership Podcast. Now, all the way up to episode 129, we’ve been running daily episodes, and that’s featured great guests, wonderful interviews, inspirations, exercises that you can actually listen to and take back and use tactically the information that you get from to make your next meeting better. And based on the feedback that I’ve been getting from both the guests and the audience, they’re looking for a longer format interview.

So, the show started out to go daily with short episodes. It’s now evolving, so on Tuesdays, what you can expect is roughly a 25 to 30 minute deep interview with even more great guests that we’re going to be bringing onto the show. And then, on Thursdays, you can expect a practical quick tip episode that you can actually take out and put into action right away to become a stronger leader or, again, have a better meeting.

And if you’ve got any feedback about the changes coming up starting on episode 130, then please send an email to info@meetingleadershipinc.com. And if you’ve got some suggestions about some great guests for the future, I would love to hear from you.

06:58 – Podcast Outro

And the main thing that you can expect from The Meeting Leadership Podcast going forward is you’re going to get more practical tips, more inspiration, more ways to build outstanding meetings. And having said that, I want to wrap up this episode and say thank you so much for listening, and we’ll see you next time on The Meeting Leadership Podcast.

Thanks for listening to The Meeting Leadership Podcast. Be sure to subscribe for more strategies to help you become an outstanding leader. And don’t forget to rate and review so we can bring you even more great content. We’ll see you next time, right here on The Meeting Leadership Podcast.

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Connect With Gordon Sheppard

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Gordon Sheppard

Gord is on a mission to change the world, one meeting at a time. Over his 25+ years in business Gord has run or participated in more than 2000 meetings! Not only is Gord the CEO of Business Expert Solutions Inc. (owner/operator of Meeting Leadership Inc), but he is also a Facilitator, Trainer, Business Consultant, Author, Speaker and Podcaster who helps leaders learn how to have great meetings, so they can build outstanding organizations and serve their clients at the highest possible level.

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