What’s our next action?

What's our next action?

As you can imagine, I spend a lot of time in meetings (I bet you do, too!). If the meeting has to do with a specific project (e.g., a system selection or implementation project), there are two rules I try to adhere to as much as humanly possible:

  1. Anything that can be communicated by written word (we used to call them "memos") does not need to be covered in a meeting. Answering questions about points made in the memo is fine, but simply re-reading the actual memo itself is redundant and a waste of time.
  2. Every meeting should end with an answer to "What are our next steps?" The riskiest thing you can do is leave a meeting without everyone knowing (and agreeing to!) what is going to happen next. Even if the next step is "We're waiting on X to provide Y" it's better to state that clearly (in case X was unaware you were waiting on them!) than to assume everyone knows.

In the age of Zoom meetings, both of these rules are particularly important. Keeping meetings focused will make everyone's life more tolerable and all our meetings more productive.

Wes's Wednesday Wisdom Archives

Documenting Process is Critical

February 22, 2019

When it comes to managing data successfully, process is critical. For example, a client of …

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Motion vs. Action

February 14, 2019

In James Clear’s book Atomic Habits (I recommend it!), he discusses the concept of motion vs. action. …

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Are You Answering Your Calls?

February 7, 2019

I’ve written about this before, but apparently I have to keep repeating it. If you’ve …

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Who do you trust?

January 31, 2019

Who Do You Trust I was reading an article recently about Warren Buffet’s “rules” for …

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Set benchmarks to measure progress

January 24, 2019

It’s impossible to measure progress if you don’t know your starting point. This sounds axiomatic, …

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You’ll make incorrect decisions. Acknowledge them and fix it.

January 17, 2019

A client of mine recently wrote the following to me: “It’s so hard to set …

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"Experience is unobservable to everyone except the person who it happens to."

January 10, 2019

In Dan Gilbert’s book Stumbling on Happiness, he writes: “Experience is unobservable to everyone except …

"Experience is unobservable to everyone except the person who it happens to." Read More »

Know Your Audience Before You Speak

December 20, 2018

This one may seem obvious, but when you’re speaking to anyone, whether it’s one person, …

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"Behavior is a function of the person in their environment."

December 13, 2018

Lewin’s equation says “behavior is a function of the person in their environment.” (He was …

"Behavior is a function of the person in their environment." Read More »

Signal-to-noise ratio

December 5, 2018

Signal-to-noise ratio Signal-to-noise ratio, formally used, applies to electricity and engineering, and refers to how …

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