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Let’s try doings

Meetings can be a living nightmare.
Let’s try “doings” instead. What’s the difference?

Meetings have an agenda, doings a goal.

Meetings cover topics, doings aim for results.

In a meeting, you talk about things.
In a doing, you do things.

To be sure, getting to results can involve lots of talking.
But it’s not about the talking.

Too often, we meet just for the talking.
Ending up with lots of, well, talk but no result.

But where will the talking lead you?
Asking that question is a powerful shift already.

You don’t meet to talk.
You talk to make progress.

Often, when a meeting is over, the work starts.
But when a doing is over, the work is done (ideally, at least).

Here’s a simple recipe:

  1. There’s an issue. (For example, a decision needs to be made. A plan needs to be made. A conflict has emerged and you seek alignment.)
  2. No issue, no gathering.
  3. You agree on what exactly you want to do in the meeting.
  4. You gather in a room.
  5. You do what you said you’d do.

Even if the result is merely a plan, if that’s what you agreed upon as the goal of gathering in a room, then that’s much more than the open-endedness of many meetings that simply end because time’s up.

Getting people together, whether in a meeting room or online, to work on solving problems is great. The problem is when it’s just for the sake of it.

How do you deal with meeting madness?

PS: Don’t get me wrong. There’s tremendous value in “merely” meeting for the sake of it, but there might be better places than a meeting room.

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