Effective Meetings “Two Heads are Better than One”
Why meet? Meetings are held in all types of businesses Meetings are a great tool in communication process.
Meetings are held for variety of purposes: To co-ordinate or arrange activities To give information to a group of people To report on some activity or experience To put forward ideas or grievances for discussion To create involvement and interest To obtain assistance
Types of Meetings: Formal Meetings Have set rules and guidelines. Formal record of them must be kept. A clear agenda is a must. Annual General Meeting. They are held to review company performance and all shareholders are invited. Participants must be given an advance notice. Statutory Meeting. Required by law. Directors and shareholders meet to consider reports. Board Meetings. They are held more often, as needed.
Types of Meetings: Informal Meetings They are not bound by regulations as formal meetings. An agenda will be a plus, but not required. Management Meeting. Attended by managers of various departments. For instance, they may come together to discuss launch of a new product. Departmental Meetings. All personnel of a certain department is invited. Good for information sharing and/or obtaining feedback. Working Parties (Work Groups). They are set up to handle a particular problem or task. Progress reports are shared and further actions are specified.
Why Meetings Fail? Managers spend about 60% of their time in meetings. If held effectively, meetings contribute greatly to efficiency of organizations. Unfortunately, in many organizations meetings boil down to “killing time”. Energy, time, and resources are wasted. Bunch of formal statements are made. Such meetings are not managed well and/or participants are not sure of their roles.
Attending Meetings Try to understand the meeting’s purpose and your role in it. Do your homework. Prepare for meetings. Read all necessary information in advance. Talk to people who will be presenting. Get others’ feedback on important topics. Take active part in the meeting. Participate when appropriate. Don’t be the one who later says “I should have…” Give everyone a chance to speak up. Do not interrupt. Try to lay out your disagreement in a constructive way. Listen to others carefully. Take brief notes.
Roles Our role in meetings is a set of behaviors expected of us by the group. Try to relate to the following nine roles: Chair/Coordinator Shaper/Team Leader Innovator/ Creative Thinker Monitor-evaluator/Critical Thinker Worker/Implementer Team builder Finisher/Detail-checker and pusher Research investigator/Researcher outside the team Expert (Meredith Belbin’s Categorization of Group Roles, taken from “How to Manage Meetings”, 2002.)
Successful Team Will contain a balance of all nine roles. Several people may share the same role or one person may perform several roles. Try to pick the role which fits you best. Do not pretend. Be open. Observe your meetings to see unfilled gaps.
Group Task Functions
Group Maintenance Functions
Handling Nonfunctional People
Nonfunctional People (con’t)
Leadership Defined: Leadership is the use of power to promote the goal accomplishment and maintenance of the group. - D. W. Johnson (Hamilton, p.238)
Leadership in Meetings The best soldier is not soldierly The best fighter is not ferocious The best conqueror does not take part in the war The best employer of men keeps himself below them This is called the virtue of not contending This is called the ability of using people - Lao-tsu, the writer of the Tao Te Ching, more than 2000 years ago
Trait Theory of Leadership Do you believe that some people are “born leaders”? Basically, that’s what this theory suggests at the extreme. However, research on leadership does not fully support the trait theory. Most experts believe that good leaders are not born, they are trained. So this is a moderate version of the trait theory.
Trait Theory of Leadership
Leader Responsibilities (con’t)
Function Theory of Leadership
Situational Contingency Theory
Situational Contingency Theory states that… Autocratic Leadership Style works best when: Group agreement is not required for implementation The group is very large Time for a decision is short
Situational Contingency Theory states that… Democratic Leadership is best when: Greater employee satisfaction is needed. Group commitment is needed for implementation Tasks are complicated and require lengthy discussion. Increased productivity is needed. Reduced resistance to change is sought.
Situational Leadership Theory Definition: “A good leader is flexible and can change styles when needed .” Hersey and Blanchard described four leadership styles whose selection depends on the ability and willingness of subordinates to carry out a particular task.
Situational Leadership Theory Delegating style. Employees make and implement decisions on their own. This style works best when employees are both willing and able to do the job.
Situational Leadership Theory Participating Style. Employees and leader share in decision making. This style works best when employees have the ability but require encouragement. Telling Style. Employees receive detailed instructions with close supervision. It works best when employees are able but lack the knowledge needed to do the job.
Transformational Leadership Charismatic leaders (Lee Iaccoca,Martin Luther King, Jr., Franklin Roosevelt, Mary Kay Ash,..)… Inspire followers Articulate a vision Provide plan for attaining vision Mobilize commitment