Too many mediocre meetings?
Turns out there are some great resources for solving this problem.
Meeting Science - It's a real thing
Academics have been studying the science of meetings for decades. One of the godfathers of this field is Steven Rogelberg, Chancellor's Professor, Organizational Science at University of North Carolina. Here's a small sampling of his work:
The Surprising Science of Meetings (a great read for anyone who leads meetings)
The Cambridge Handbook of Meeting Science (a deeper dive into the field's academic grounding. Edited by Joseph Allen, Nale Lehmann-Willenbrock and Steven Rogelberg)
Why Your Meetings Stink - And What To Do About It is a short article in Harvard Business Review based on Dr. Rogelberg's research. Here's a 45-minute talk he gave at Google in 2019. He recaps the key findings from the book and explains how to apply the key principles at work.
This may be Dr. Rogelberg's most relevant advice for many of us: The Surprising Science Behind Successful Remote Meetings.
Dr. Joe Allen runs the Center for Meeting Effectiveness at the University of Utah, where he is Professor of Industrial/ Organizational Psychology. Dr. Allen recently co-authored with Karin Reed "Suddenly Virtual: How to Make Remote Meetings Work".
In the Corporate World
While there are many players in the meeting tech space, there are not many that deeply understand the dynamics of achieving high-performing meetings. Lucid Meetings is one company that fills this intersection with confidence. Founded by Elise Keith and John Keith, this company makes it easy to find your path to better meetings.
Elise authored a remarkably insightful book on this topic: "Where The Action Is: The Meetings That Make or Break Your Organization"
The Lucid Meetings folks have done a ton of constructive thinking about meetings, as evidenced by what they share on their site. This article on The 16 Types of Meetings inspired Project Gather's take on categorizing generic meeting purposes. This article is the best, by far, source of the estimated number of meetings in the U.S. tl;dr? Try between 36 and 55 million meetings a day.
The Dilemma of How To Meet
As our Covid anxieties recede we'll have more need to decide how to meet - another Zoom meeting, or in real life?
tClara's Project Gather tool helps inform that decision. It brings to light the risks that are more likely to impact a virtual meeting. Give it a try here.