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Dear Manager, you’re holding too many meetings

Laker, B. ORCID:, Pereira, V., Malik, A. and Soga, L. ORCID: (2022) Dear Manager, you’re holding too many meetings. Harvard Business Review, 100 (5). 23. ISSN 0017-8012

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New research shows that 70% of meetings keep employees from doing productive work. While there was a 20% decrease in the average length of meetings during the pandemic, the number of meetings attended by a worker on average rose by 13.5%. In addition, newly promoted managers are holding almost a third more meetings than their seasoned counterparts. To reduce the number of meetings for your team: Start scaling back by being very selective about which meetings to hold. Think about which meetings have been most effective. It’s most likely that the ones that needed a two-way dialogue in real-time were productive and efficient. As a general rule of thumb, conduct meetings when you want to review work, clarify or validate something, or when you’re distributing work among your team. Transition your daily status meetings to Slack or team. Every weekday, schedule a message to go out at 9:00 am asking everyone to send in their updates, explaining what they’re working on, any important project updates, setbacks, etc. Then scan the responses and follow up privately on updates that may need more context. Use digital tools for asynchronous work. Tools like Mural can be used for asynchronous brainstorming meetings. Then you can schedule a follow-up meeting to review them together, likely cutting your meeting time in half.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Henley Business School > Leadership, Organisations and Behaviour
ID Code:104040
Publisher:Harvard Business School

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