Meetings are one of most time consuming and demotivating events in daily corporate life.
Either for simple communication or complex decision making, the only two justified reasons to organize a meeting, a structured preparation and execution can deliver quite efficient results.
In this article from HBR, a framework to plan efficient meetings is presented, based on the following tips:
- Seek input from team members
- Select topics that affect the entire team
- List agenda topics as questions the team needs to answer
- Note whether the purpose of the topic is to share information, seek input for a decision, or make a decision
- Estimate a realistic amount of time for each topic
- Propose a process for addressing each agenda item
- Specify how members should prepare for the meeting
- Identify who is responsible for leading each topic
- Make the first topic “review and modify agenda as needed”
- End the meeting with a plus/delta
All items should be integrated into a comprehensive agenda and distributed in advance to participants.
Source: How to Design an Agenda for an Effective Meeting.
It’s such a universal truth it’s like a bad joke: most meetings suck!
When they’re bad, they are the epitome of bad corporate culture, inefficiency and mediocrity.
The ability to manage your emotions and remain calm under pressure has a direct link to your performance. TalentSmart has conducted research with more than a million people, and we’ve found that 90% of top performers are skilled at managing their emotions in times of stress in order to remain calm and in control.
The tricky thing about stress and the anxiety that comes with it is that it’s an absolutely necessary emotion. Our brains are wired such that it’s difficult to take action until we feel at least some level of this emotional state. In fact, performance peaks under the heightened activation that comes with moderate levels of stress. As long as the stress isn’t prolonged, it’s harmless.
Peter Drucker once observed that, “Much of what we call management consists of making it difficult for people to work.” Nine years after the management guru’s death, his remark is truer than ever: employees often have to negotiate a mass of clutter—from bulging inboxes to endless meetings and long lists of objectives to box-tick—before they can focus on their real work. For the past 50 years manufacturers have battled successfully to streamline their factory floors and make them “lean”. Today, businesses of all types need to do the same in their offices.
Time is one of those scarce resources that one cannot buy, grow or delegate. Therefore, its usage should be planned to maximize productivity and profitability.
The Case for Executive Assistants
As organizations become Lean, executives and managers are overwhelmed with organizational and support tasks.
As competitivity demands for increased productivity, Executive Assistants can play a crucial role in organizing the office.
7 Simple Ways to Boost Your Productivity
Fueled by the growing number of ways to interact and communicate, productivity is challenged every day.
Follows a list of simple actions to adopt:
1. Stay away from social networks
2. Stop organizing, start executing
3. Use hard stops and deadlines
5. Learn to say no
6. Mute your devices
7. For strategizing and thinking, work at home
5 Ways to Be Productive When the Pressure is On
Multiple projects with shorter deadlines, frequent meetings, non-stop emails and phone calls: welcome to a modern “normal” office day!
In such a demanding environment, one must learn to prioritize in order to increase productivity, even if that means decreasing one’s availability.
In this article, Vivian Giang from Business Insider list 5 productivity tips taken from the book “Success Under Stress”:
- Learn to prioritize
- Focus on single tasks, one at a time
- Don’t be available all the time
- Communicate your own time planning
- Identify, and correct, time wasters
A personal approach to organizational time management
Simple and straight-forward guidelines to execute a good time management strategy.
Making time management the organization’s priority
From McKinsey Quarterly, a great tool on time management that thoroughly explains how executives should align their time spending with the company’s stated priorities, and the way executives spend their time is as a systemic organizational problem, not merely a personal one.