Self-awareness is understanding one’s own character, feelings, motives, and desires.  

As part of the Meeting Leadership Mindset, self-awareness in the foundation of the questions you should be asking yourself before attending each meeting:

  1. What am I bracing myself for?
  2. How do I feel about the other people in the meeting?
  3. What do I want from this meeting?

Asking yourself these questions should give you a better understanding of your own feelings, motives, and desires.  That way, you can approach each meeting with a clear motive and without fear of being caught off guard.

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00:00 – Show Opening

Are you a professional who wants to become a more effective leader? Than get ready for daily 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.

00:27 – Podcast content starts here!

Welcome to another episode of The Meeting Leadership Podcast, where we give you the practical tips and the strategies that you need to learn how to build your leadership skills and run outstanding meetings. It is really good to have you here. 

00:47 – Introducing: The Meeting Leadership Mindset Series

And if you are a professional who really appreciates the value of mental preparation, then you’re going to get a lot out of today’s show because today’s show is called Meeting Leadership Mindset: Three Pre-Meeting Questions that You Must Answer.

Now, the Meeting Leadership Mindset Series is something that I’m going to be doing sort of periodically throughout the podcast. Today, with these three pre-meeting questions, they are absolutely powerful when it comes to mentally getting ready to go into deal with a group of people. And like Benjamin Franklin says, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Well, we are definitely not going to fail to prepare because these three questions are going to help you really get ready.

01:20 – Question 1 – What am I bracing myself for?

And with that in mind, here’s the first question that you should answer before you head into to lead a meeting. What am I bracing myself for? Now, this question is a great one because it makes you think through kind of all the relationships that you have in that situation. Now, maybe you don’t know people and you are kind of nervous about not knowing them or maybe you’ve got kind of a charged relationship with somebody and you get overly focused on them. By asking yourself this simple question, but working through the scenario of what you’re actually bracing yourself for, then you can have a chance to work things through and really be mentally prepared.

01:55 – Question 2 – How do I feel about the other people in the meeting?

Which leads us into the second question, which is this. How do I feel about the other people in the meeting? And one of the best ways that you can answer this question is actually kind of to maybe put a circle on a piece of paper. Imagine that that’s the table that you’re sitting around. Draw some sort of stick figures for the people that are going to be in the meeting and then kind of map out quite literally how you feel about each of them. Then, you can start to get into what might be your blind spots. There might be somebody in there that you actually don’t like, but as a meeting leader you have to have the ability to step back and be objective because you have to still lead that person who is on your team. Or maybe by answering this question, you’ll figure out that you really like somebody in the meeting and in fact you’ve been playing them as a favorite and that is actually creating another sort of blind spot where you’re omitting the opinions and the input from the other people in the room. These are both scenarios that you want to avoid, so make sure you answer that powerful question.

02:50 – Question 3 – What do I want from this meeting?

And by answering the third question, you’re going to really set the tone for the entire meeting. And here’s the question, what do I want from this meeting? And when you are able to clearly answer this type of question, it really will dictate how things go. For example, if you’re walking into sort of an innovation discovery meeting and you’re able to answer that question and say, “You know what? I just want to come out of there with 10 great ideas that we can actually explore further,” or maybe what you really want out of a meeting our decisions, so you really can then anticipate how you’re going to allow people to share in a discussion and come to a consensus where something actually gets decided before the end of the meeting. And regardless of what your answers are for any of these questions, really you want to just get into the habit of asking yourself these questions before you go to the meeting, answering them to the best of your ability, and you know that that will have a direct impact on the outcome and the value of the meeting that you will be leading.

03:45 – Recap of 3 questions

And now let me take a moment to recap the three pre-meeting questions that you must answer. Number one, what am I bracing myself for? Number two, how do I feel about other people in the meeting? And number three, what do I want from this meeting? 

04:00 – Expanded learning – MLP 038 – MLP 046

And if you’d like to go even deeper as you get into your own meeting leadership mindset, then check out episode 38 on the Meeting Leadership Podcast. It’s called How to Make a Great First Impression in a Meeting, and you can get that one by going to, or you might want to check out episode 46. It’s called Having a Title Doesn’t Mean You Know How to Run a Meeting. And I think this is a great episode because again, when we think about blind spots, titles can be just that. So if you’re the type of person who wants to really kind of dig in there and be aware of that kind of thing, then visit to learn more.

04:40 – Meeting Leadership Academy –

I also want to let you know that this episode or The Meeting Leadership Podcast is brought to you by The Meeting Leadership Academy. Now there, if you’re looking for great options, sort of live training for your team, or maybe even if you’re in the kind of mood that we set in this episode and you are looking for some one on one coaching, you’re going to find it there, and you’re also going to find some great online training options as well. It’s all there at And as always, thank you so much for listening, and we’ll see you tomorrow on The Meeting Leadership Podcast.

05:10 – Podcast Outro

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 fresh content every day. We’ll see you tomorrow, right here on The Meeting Leadership Podcast.

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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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