It’s Valentine’s Day in the US and a Friday so if you are reading this, you either don’t fall for the day-of-love stuff, you are waiting for your dinner reservation, or you are running to the mall for a last-minute purchase to surprise your significant other. On the other hand, it could still be earlier enough you are still at work, sitting in a meeting and wondering why they had to pick a Friday to discuss something you just found out about because they didn’t share it before you got there.
For those that don’t get caught up in “Hallmark holidays,” Valentine’s Day is a day we celebrate love in which chocolates are exchanged, the floral industry blooms with $1.9 billion in spending, and the average person will spend $162 for that special someone. There are different approaches to Valentine’s Day that are entertainingly applicable to how we, as humans, participate in meetings so let’s have a little fun and take a look at these personalities that offer insightful meeting best practices that make a meeting with heart.
The Romantic is totally into the spirit of the holiday and aims to impress. They will go out of their way to create a story or picture that can be forever memorialized and talked about. No detail is too small and no experience or gift is too large.
Be a Meeting Romantic – While trying to make co-workers swoon is generally frowned upon, trying to impress through simple gestures wouldn’t hurt a bit for your work reputation! Try a few things:
- Be on time every time…people notice this
- Be considerate. Make sure those calling remotely get their turn to share and engage despite not being in the room
- Be helpful. Offer to take notes for the facilitator and watch them fall out of their chair (this is a good thing). Use a meeting tool like Docket to capture the decisions, actions, and key takeaways
The Planner is a methodical legend who skillfully lays out each detail in advance to ensure everything goes right. While they may sound like the Romantic (and can be), they sometimes get thrown off when things fail to follow the planned order which can change their mood and challenge their flexibility to enjoy whatever fate brings them.
Be a Meeting Planner – We all need more meeting Planners to help make meetings more effective. Try a few of these ideas to help bring out your inner planner:
- Plan ahead. Create, collaborate, and share agendas to help keep things on track. Use a meeting tool like Docket to facilitate this part of the meeting
- Be ready to deviate from the agenda and ensure time is used wisely
- Be proactive with tasks knowing someone is waiting on you to get it done
The Rebel is typically the one who wants to do everything the absolute opposite to make a point..they aren’t like everyone else. The Rebel may stay late at the office and pretend there is no national holiday when secretly, their heart was dinged and they wish a Romantic would walk in and change their story. (We don’t make this stuff up!).
Be a Meeting Rebel – While a Rebel for meetings may sound negative, the Meeting Rebel can offer a different perspective through their stubborn demeanor. Try a few of these Rebel tips:
- Challenge others to think differently. Without being difficult, bringing an opposing view can put decisions to the test
- Share your strong work ethic. We’re not suggesting missing out on holidays but when you identify something that is not of value or interest, turn your energy towards something better
- In every challenging meeting, keep hoping things will get better and acknowledge there are good days and bad and every story can change
Don’t click out of this blog just yet (it’s free!). We know you don’t like to spend money and that’s okay (as long as it is with someone else). But seriously, you might buy the chocolates at the discount store and leave the price tag on the flowers but your idea of romance is planning for the future and since chocolates are eaten and flowers die, investing more than that would be negligent after all.
Be a Meeting Cheapskate – Romantics can be over-the-top, Planners sensitive, and Rebel’s, direct, but the Cheapskate can be a company’s saving grace if you try these things:
- Encourage others to be lean in tools and process to create better focus and use the resources they have for greater efficiency
- Help others be conscious of meeting time and who is in attendance. Be on the lookout for large groups who may not be the best audience for the issues at hand as this resource time adds up
Just a Friend (But Wants To Be More)
It wouldn’t be a love story without this person…that one that is always there but steps back with the overtly Romantic or rude Rebel pops into the picture. They go about their business and counsel with others about their true heart and are always there for their true love when they get hurt or celebrate. When they so desperately want to be the One.
Be a Meeting Friend – Being the friend isn’t always so bad…typically it means lots of time with the other person and getting to know them more intimately. Try a few of these ideas to improve your meeting game:
- Listen and observe others and balance that with trying to solve problems. Sometimes people just want to meet to share and not necessarily solve
- Learn the art of walking away, giving people time to think through discussions and reflect on making the right choices
- Be patient in all things. While the saying, “Good things come to those that wait,” isn’t always the case, displaying patience is a noticeable quality that can go a long way in building a reputation of trust and leadership
Bring your best self to each meeting through the careful and intentional use of your qualities to help make meetings with heart.