Here’s a piece of important advice for all managers who find that their calendar is wall-to-wall meetings three months into the future.
“Remember – you’re a leader, not a meeter”
This came up today in a meeting(!) with some of the nice people from Danish software company Maconomy.
5 thoughts on “Advice for leaders”
Great site and your title of Chief Happiness Officer is the best.
Spreading humor and happiness has to be the best job ever.
I try to avoid meetings at all costs. I just make an excuse or say that I’ll catch up with another co-worker about it later. I’ve found that a good way out of them is sighting pressing deadlines. =)
@ Jonathan Mead – I am completely with you!
I even wrote once post titled like this. The reality that sometimes you must attend these meetings. Can’t run, can’t hide. When this is the case you must get max out of it. How you do it?
meetings are viewed as boring and wastes of time because most meetings are! the real work takes place in the meeting after the meeting! As people in any place we speak openly and feel free in an environment that encourages open discussion and thrives for dissenting opinions, once we enter a board room the energy is sucked right out (i will not go into power point). Recently I lead a creativity training for teachers and we spoke about how in the hallways and classrooms you cannot get the students to be quiet – once they enter the class you cannot get them to speak. We came to realize that when people (students) are freely allowed to speak a loss of control is felt by the teacher (or leader in the meeting) leaders and teachers feel the only way they can seem important is by keeping control. Greater control leads to lower creativity and weak communication. I recomend that meetings need conflict (like a good movie) and it is the leaders responsibility to mine and find the conflict in the room. Scary at first once we master conflict mining (link a psychologist) meetings and productivity increase.
It’s catchy, and would that it were true. The problem is that the vast majority of managers *are not* leaders. They’re managers. They have no more vision or direction than the chairs they sit on; their jobs are to manage staff and projects and budgets etc.
Managers referring to themselves (and more to the point, advertisers/sellers referring to managers) as leaders is just self-flattering business doublespeak.
That said, if this little bit of insincere flattery encourages some managers to back off on the meeting frenzy (but how else will they feel important and valuable?), then power to it!