If your company culture leans towards too many meetings, it can keep employees from having time to get anything done. Changing the meeting culture, however, starts at the top.
In addition to packing the day with meetings, employees often complain about inefficient meetings. Meetings with no clear agenda, meetings where people are on their phones instead of participating, meetings with too many attendees who don’t need to be there, meetings that go over their allotted time. (Take this quiz to identify your company’s meeting culture.)
To put a finger on what’s actually not working about your meeting culture, ask the employees. This could be a one-question pulse poll on the intranet or a short email survey or even part of your annual employee engagement survey. To fix the problem of inefficient meetings, you need to clearly understand exactly what isn’t working.
It can help to communicate desired meeting etiquette. At Tribe, we’ve done some interesting campaigns to help companies improve their meeting culture, with channels ranging from digital signage to newsletter articles to printed beverage coasters in conference rooms, each one with a different tip to promote more effective meetings.
But to affect large-scale change across your organization, you’ll need the folks at the top to change their own behavior. If the CEO is committed to improving your meeting culture, then you’ve actually got a prayer of achieving more efficient meetings across the board.
From there, you can trigger a chain reaction of new meeting behavior. Let’s say the CEO makes more efficient meetings a priority when he or she is meeting with the executive leadership team. With a little encouragement, those leaders might emphasize better meeting behaviors with their teams. And so on and so on, so that a preference for more effective meetings spreads throughout the organization.
Once the leaders of the organization begin changing their meeting behaviors, your communications can reinforce those changes. This piece from Harvard Business Review discusses that concept further. Still, you’ll need to sustain those communications, and keep them fresh, to keep more effective meetings top of mind in your company’s culture.
Interested in improving your meeting culture? Tribe can help.