How to Lead Terrible Meetings.

I’ve sat through my fair share of meetings.  Few of them were really good meetings.  Most of them were pointless, boring, and accomplished nothing.  Some leaders know how to lead meetings well.  Others make meetings excruciatingly painful.  So today’s post I figured I would write about five ways to lead excruciatingly boring & pointless meetings (I hope you catch the sarcasm) 🙂

Have no clear agenda.  Simply show up and talk about random things that are on your mind without any clearly defined goal in mind for the meeting.  After all, as the leader, this meeting is your time in the spotlight!  Your time to shine!  This is the one time of the week where everyone gets together and they have to listen to you!  Who needs a meeting agenda … just let the conversation flow and see where it goes…

Use the majority of the meeting to ‘teach’ your team things that only you, the leader, would know.  There’s a reason your the leader.  You have to continually share your vision.  Always do that by talking for a long time.  The more you repeat it verbally, the more people will understand it.  Your team is here to listen to your presentation, not to share their opinion.

Never mention any specifics.  Keep things in the realm of generalities.  Use phrases like “this is what we should do” and “we need to be more like this” rather than “this is what we ARE doing THIS WEEK.” On top of all that, never assign any specific tasks to anybody.  Rather, keep the conversation on the philosophical level and assume that someone is going to pick up the responsibility for the random ideas that you have.

Let dominant personalities take over.  They’re the only ones that have anything worthwhile to say anyways.  They’re the only ones that bring results, so why listen to quieter people who never talk anyway? If they really had something to say, they would take initiative and pipe in.

Get defensive every time someone presents an opposite opinion as you.  It is always personal.  They are never simply talking about an idea, they are always talking about YOU.  If they disagree with your view, they are disagreeing with you as a person.  Don’t let anyone disagree with you, and make sure to always get defensive when they do.  That way you will create a culture where people will never disagree with you and you’ll have unity.

Let the meeting drag on.  Let it go as long as possible, because the longer the meeting, the more time you’re spending with your team, and quality time builds team!  Don’t write anything down that was said because this meeting is mostly about connecting with each other and building relationships… not about getting a job done.  

Don’t hold anyone accountable to results.  When next week’s meeting comes around, don’t ask about whether anyone got their job done or not.  Just assume they did.  Assume everything.  Assume that your team knew which responsibilities you talked about vaguely fell upon them.  Assume they got it done.  Don’t email out a list.

**If you do all the above things, I can guarantee that you will improve your skills at leading terrible meetings.  Your employees will dread them more and they will feed your ego more.  You will demotivate your team and drain them to the point where they will do anything you say just to get it over with.

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