Creative Leadership

The Horrors of Meeting Hell

According to a survey by First Option, a conference event company in the United Kingdom, these are the 10 biggest complaints about corporate meetings. I’m here to tell you it’s true of faith based organizations as well:

1. Drifting off the Topic………. 67%
2. Lack of Leadership………….63%
3. No Natural Daylight………..51%
4. Meeting for Meeting’s Sake……..44%
5. The Broken Record………42%
6. Running over Allotted Time……..40%
7. Meetings with No Purpose….. 39%
8. Interruptions from Phones and Pagers……35%
9. Refreshments not Refreshed Regularly….. 30%
10. The Cynical Attendee…..28%

Let’s start a movement to MAKE MEETINGS INTERESTING. First – don’t call a meeting unless it’s absolutely necessary. More man-hours are wasted in useless meetings than any other part of the workday. Lead meetings, don’t manage them. Conduct meetings in interesting places – forget the boring conference room, and find a more creative, interesting location. Create an agenda, and let people know ahead of time, so they can plan and bring the right information. And finally, end the meeting on time. Even if you accomplish nothing, people will admire you for not wasting their time!

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  1. Strange… Seems like this post comes from personal experience.

    From a fellow hostage, in a faith-based organizational POW camp-meeting, I can attest to the torture.
    I vote that this weeks meeting should've had an open bar.
  2. Being apart of a small church, you would think that the meetings would be streamlined and effective….hahaha

    The only one I would add…is ‘The Delegator’. The mysterious person who has all the vision, but not the know how to make it happen, so they delegate, then the receiver can’t be bothered so they delegate. By the time it gets to a level of a supposed worker, the vision is milked down to a ‘oh, I’ve got to do this now huh??’ (insert something about the 80/20 rule??).

    There are far too many visionaries in modern churches and not enough who are wanting to get their hands dirty.

    We recently attempted an outreach event at our church, which was an idea The Cookie Monster here birthed and I had everything planned out and organised to the enth degree…and yes, I was heavily involved in the low level mechanics. The meetings that were held, would have been more effective if they were held whilst watching Jerry Springer and knocking back a few of Australia’s finest!!!

    I know alot of faith based organisations have volunteered workers, but why should the mentality of our effectiveness and presentation be any different to the suit who earns $300k and drives a Maseratti? I think, we as people of faith, should be even more effective in ALL apsects of our dealings based on the fact of who we’re all serving.

    I’d love to get your take on it Phil (being the heretic you are :p) and dealing with people in an industry that can be at times…umm…challenging (understatement huh).

  3. Keep in mind that there will always be people who aren't actually capable of making things happen. For them, having meetings gives them the appearance of actual accomplishment.  I firmly believe that people who can "make things happen" will always be in demand.  Make it happen people are like magnets – everyone else is drawn to them.

  4. for some reason people love asking stupid questions in meetings. Most of them are “What if’s”. 

  5. Churches and corporations face the same dilemma;
    meeting is part of corporate existence yet can be very taxing. When
    “having met” is the only outcome and an organization is not
    progressing as a result, it becomes stale really fast not to say outright
    painful. Being injected with landmarks of passion and enrichment towards achievement
    is a must for any organizations which want to change the dynamic of its


  6. Had some meetings with some schools recently and thought about this while I was in there bored to death….

    I hate meetings that include departments and topics not related to my responsibilities. Sitting there for a half hour listening to parking management when I’m a video guy and only 1 minute of the meeting pertains to me.

    Also hate meetings when there’s a loud mouth in the room that won’t let anyone else share. Everyone else is drowned out by their continuous idea spouting and lack of thinking/listening.

  7.  Some meetings are just boring, I do not think we need to be entertained but sheesh can we at least keep it alive. Also we need snack lots and lots of snacks. Whenever I conduct meetings I try to do things that will spark discussion or creativity.

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