Are you a leader who is looking for some motivation when it comes to getting ready for a meeting?

Then listen to episode #133 on the Meeting Leadership Podcast!

In this episode you’ll find out how proper meeting preparation can actually make your organization more profitable, as well as improve staff retention and overall satisfaction.

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Good luck is when opportunity meets preparation. While bad luck is when lack of preparation meets reality. This important quote by Eli Goldratt is especially applicable to meetings because think about it, as a leader when you don’t get ready, you know how those types of meetings go. If you’re a participant in a meeting and you don’t do anything about it before the meeting and you get there and you’re kind of winging it on the fly, that doesn’t work either. Well on today’s episode, if you want to learn why meeting preparation is critical for profitability and teamwork, then stick around.

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 Sheppard.

Welcome to another episode of the Meeting Leadership podcast. My name is Gordon Sheppard. I just want to say thank you so much for being here. Thank you for knowing that meetings and leadership go hand in hand. You can’t be a leader without leading some sort of meeting, meeting with people and you’re coming to this podcast to build your leadership skills and really learn how to run highly productive meetings. It is really good to have you here. Today we’re going to talk about an important issue that all leaders must deal with and the way they deal with it really is going to set the tone for how their team moves forward. Today we’re going to talk about why meeting preparation is critical for profitability and teamwork. When you think about meeting preparation, you have to start by thinking about the actual value of your meetings themselves.

Now there are little simple formulas where you can add up the wages and maybe how much it costs to turn on the lights and bring a few muffins and the coffee and this kind of thing and get like an hourly rate. When you start to actually put the dollar amounts on it and you count it for a one hour meeting and then maybe you can calculate it for the entire year, then you’ll actually know kind of the real dollar value. We know that meeting value is way, way more significant than that because as soon as we start to map in the opportunity cost, I could be in this meeting or I could be doing something else. Then the value of that meeting goes way, way up. As a leader, once you understand the actual value of your meetings, then you know that you have to make an investment in preparation.

With that in mind, take a moment to think about this question. How much time did you spend getting ready for your last meeting? Was it 30 minutes, 10 minutes, zero minutes? The quality of your meetings is directly related to how much preparation you and your team did. So if everybody’s just showing up to another dreaded weekly updates meeting and you’re making up stuff to say or you’re reading the agenda for the first time, actually when you’re in the meeting you know that is an absolute disaster and you know that if you’re doing that, that you have to relinquish your right to complain about it. As we all know great meetings happen before, during, and after the meeting. So if you want to make your next meeting more productive and profitable, then everybody on the meeting team should free up at least 15 to 30 minutes of prep time.

Let’s take a moment to imagine the payoff that you’re going to get when you start to do this as a team. For example, if one of the meeting participants actually has a really important point to make and they’ve actually done the research in advance and spoken to people so that when it’s their turn to speak, they’re not again kind of making it up, but they’re very well prepared and they deliver a really slick 30 seconds, one minute pitch that crystallizes their idea and then everybody can understand it, talk about it, and actually make a decision about it. That is a really valuable use of that prep time going into a meeting. Of course from a leadership perspective, if you want your team to really be engaged, if you want your staff retention rate to be as high as it possibly can be, then you know that if you’re prepped for a meeting, you know that everyone’s time is going to be really well-used.

You know you kind of mapped it out so that the meeting is going to end on time so that everyone will feel really, really respected. That is a terrific, terrific investment. If everybody shares in the spirit of this approach preparing for the meetings, you’ll never be able to say that last meeting, well it should have been an email instead of a meeting. So please do not fall into that trap of saying I am too busy to get ready for that next meeting. It’s just too important. We all know that proper meeting preparation can actually make your organization more profitable overall. As well you’re going to improve staff retention and overall satisfaction, which sounds like a pretty good trade off for 15 to 30 minutes consistently of your time. If you’ve enjoyed listening to this episode, then check out episode 34 on the Meeting Leadership podcast.

It’s called, how to measure the annual cost of meetings. There you’re going to really kind of get into the numbers game and help you really get the inspiration to do even more preparation for all of your meetings. You can get that episode by going to MeetingLeadershipInc.com/34. Then if you want to learn how to really do things right and you want to learn how Disney takes it up to that next level and serves 50 million people a year coming to their parks, then check out episode 132 on the Meeting Leadership podcast. It’s called how Disney develops outstanding leaders and that’s with Dan Cockrell now. Dan was actually at Disney for 26 years.

It’s a terrific interview. You’ll get a lot out of that one as well and the big piece you’ll take away is the attitude that a place like Disney applies and then you can take that attitude and apply it to every meeting that you get ready for. You can get that episode by going to MeetingLeadershipInc.com/132. 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 great live training options for you and your team. I can tell you I’ve been in the room and the half day workshop for effective meetings. I’ve seen the transformation for engineers, doctors, bureaucrats, and leaders of all kinds. So I really hope you take advantage of that by going to MeetingLeadershipInc.com/Academy to learn more. I’m also really excited to give you a heads up for our next wonderful interview on the podcast. It’s called why leaders need empathy, courage, and self sacrifice. That’s with Justin Yazoo and he’s a fantastic leader. In fact, he won the medal of bravery for his work in the military and he’s gone on to take all of that great leadership training that he got throughout his career and he’s applying it now to be an outstanding coach. The interview has got so much inspiration, great tips, real practical things that you can do as a leader.

Get that by going to MeetingLeadershipInc.com/134. If you haven’t done it yet, please take a moment to hit the subscribe button on your favorite podcast app. If you could leave a rating and review, we’d love to hear it and find out other ways that we can improve the show and move things forward to help you get even more leadership skills, even more ways to produce outstanding meetings. As always, 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. 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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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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