Editor's Note: Our guest blogger, Cameron Herold, is that rare individual who not only possesses knowledge and experience, but also the ability to present it clearly and effectively. Called "the best speaker I've ever heard" by Forbes magazine publisher, Rich Karlgaard, Cameron doesn't espouse theory, he weaves "in the trenches experience", gleaned through building $100 Million companies, with practical advice that gets businesses and business leaders growing immediately and rapidly. He is the founder of COO Alliance, and wrote the highly regarded (and wonderfully titled) book "Meetings Suck." This post originally appeared on his own blog and is republished here with his enthusiastic permission.
In my opinion, the meeting facilitator’s primary role is to optimize meeting productivity. Well-structured meetings chaired by a competent facilitator can help keep attendees focused and engaged, hold people accountable for performance, support the decision-making process, and assign clear tasks to advance progress. Before giving you some of my recommendations for meeting facilitators, let’s review The 5 P's of Productive Meetings:
Meaningful achievement depends on lifting one's sights and pushing toward the horizon.
– Daniel H. Pink, Drive
Great executives lead a group of committed people to a destination on the horizon. They keep their head up. They trust each other. They’re probably not marching in formation, but they’re strategically aligned because they’re heading to the same place. What matters most is that everyone is looking forward.
At some point in their career, practically all business leaders hit a well-known, oft-discussed, and absolutely impenetrable barrier: they can’t clone themselves.
I go hunting at a duck club about an hour east of our San Francisco office, and last season when I aimed and shot at a Mallard, I had an inspiration. I realized why people have a hard time understanding business leaders – even if they really want to.
When you have disciplined people, you don’t need hierarchy.
Good to Great,
I’ve been running or attending meetings at businesses around the world for nearly twenty years.
Many of us have worked in companies where the executives all but hid in their offices and let only the bare minimum of carefully controlled information trickle out.