I hate meetings – no question. I’m a believer that most meetings could happen in 5-10 minutes, but even most scheduling programs like Outlook, iCal, or Google Calendar schedule meetings in 30-60 minute blocks. But let me go one further – stop having meetings in the conference room and start meeting at the place where the problem lives. Meeting at the location of the problem allows everyone to see it, point to it, and discuss specifics.
Here’s my suggestions:
First – cancel as many meeting as possible. In most cases, you’re only taking good people away from doing real work. Certainly there’s a time for critical meetings, but start being more selective.
Second – If you have to meet, keep it short. Bring an agenda and once it’s done and someone is chosen to follow up, declare it finished and walk out.
Third – meet at the location of the problem. Look at it, discuss it, find a solution, and then move on.
See how much your productivity increases.