Last week I had a meeting at one of our client’s country offices. The building where we had the meeting had seen better times – it was almost a bit depressing. However, what was interesting to experience was the great energy, the dynamics, and the smiles that you could sense and see from the people I passed by in the corridors. I was talking to my host about my observation and he confirmed that some small adjustments on how they work together made a big difference in performance and collaboration. Being curious about what they had changed, I dug deeper to learn their secrets. Before we entered the meeting room, he showed me a sign with three words that they put on the door of every single meeting room. The sign read: ARE YOU READY?
He explained to me that after working with us they realized that their meeting culture was very unproductive and that most people came to meetings unprepared and didn’t add any value. In a way they lost their fire. To improve this issue they defined three areas of preparation for meetings:
.01 Technical//Tactical - This is the area of knowing the numbers, having all required information, bringing some ideas, solutions, and unique thoughts.
.02 Mental – This is the area of setting clear intentions for the meeting and preparing for the personal performance (e.g. how to react when things are not working out as envisioned, having a clear picture on how to engage/collaborate/listen, purposefully being in the right emotional state).
.03 Physical – This the area of having mental agility, high alertness, and great stamina (e.g. nutritional preparation of the brain, having the right posture, getting rid of pain and tension, and bringing energy to give).
The preparation in all three areas is required and everyone knows what is expected. In other words, people are held accountable if they haven’t adequately prepared themselves.
My host also shared one of his personal insights since they implemented the ARE YOU READY? approach. “In the past, we struggled to move ideas forward. Many times people would be half asleep and you would assume they were on board only to later find out that we had to revisit the same stuff over and over. Now our teams are much more engaged and present and this leads to better ideas which people are willing to fight for. This means better, more innovative solutions which at the end leads to better results. But the real kicker has been that people feel good about these productive meetings and these great results have motivated and inspired our teams to be even better.”
Three simple words with a huge impact. So let me ask you, ARE YOU READY?
By Jogi Rippel
Founder // CEO