A proven weekly meeting strategy to engage your direct reports

 In Delivery

If you have a weekly meeting with your direct reports consider how you would get everyone’s participation in the meeting, or get them sharing their progress to their goals/the operation’s goals.

One way to do this, that my sales presentation and speech communication clients find useful, is to ask the following question: “What have you done in the last seven days on your (project, goal etc.) so that you’re better off in the next seven days.

I learned this question from the book: The Leadership Challenge, by Kouzes and Posner. I regularly ask this question at the start of each module of my Memorable Spoken Messages programmes. Over time asking this question can ‘train’ your reports to come to the meeting with an answer to the question. It can also spark greater participation among all participants.

For this process to work you need to consistently ask the question at each weekly meeting. I suggest that you ask the question at the start of the meeting (so you don’t run out of time) and limit each person’s response to 45 seconds. This is ample time for sharing short, sharp spoken messages.

The first time you ask the question you may get little response. Simply tell the group you’ll be asking the question at subsequent meetings and you expect them to come prepared with a 45 second answer. You should get a high percentage of responses by the third or fourth week.

The ‘how to apply’ for this post: Trial the “What have you done in the last seven days?” question in your upcoming weekly meetings you have with your direct reports, and reflect and assess the worth of using it.

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  • John Groarke

    Thanks Michael

    Here’s an end of meeting tip, for any meeting. The chairperson purposefully asks every participant for an end of meeting comment … and you must make one.

    Typically the comments relate to the meeting outcomes … “I am really pleased we got the consensus I was seeking” … or the contributions of participants … “that was a great idea of Michael’s” … or on the week ahead … “I know we agree an ambitious target, but let’s smash it”.

    A client of mine does this for every project meeting. And as we know, not everyone speaks up during such meetings. But after a few weeks, the non-speakers start speaking throughout and not just when they are forced to at the end.

    I hope this helps – cheers – John

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