How to Keep Meetings from Taking over your Life

Feeling overwhelmed by all of the meetings you have? Do you have too many people to meet with and not enough time to meet with them all? Is your Sermon Prep time constantly getting pushed back by meetings? For all you do, this blog post is for you. Here are a few strategies to eliminate or reduce one on one meetings.

Too many meetings

1. Take control of your schedule.

Keeping meetings from taking over your life begins with making a conscious decision concerning when you will do meetings. Make a decision on specific times when you will be available for meetings. Unless you are in a sales job, your schedule should dictate meetings as much as possible. In a previous blog post, I explained how to identify your top priorities and then write an ideal week based on these priorities. Included in your ideal week can be set meeting times. If you are at the whim of ever other person’s schedule then, it will be difficult for you ever to have sanity in yours.

2. Eliminate meetings that aren’t critical.

Sometimes it seems like life is one big meeting? But many of the meetings that we find ourselves in are not that important.  Avoid unnecessary meetings by asking these questions:

Is this meeting really necessary? Can anyone else do this meeting? What will the consequences be if I don’t meet with this person one on one? I have found that by asking these questions 50% of my one on one meetings can be eliminated with no consequence.

3. Consider one on two meetings instead of one on one.

Perhaps you are in charge of small groups at your church and you attempt to meet individually with each small group leader monthly. Do these kinds of meetings really have to happen one on one? Look for opportunities to meet with two people at a time where the meeting is informational and not confidential.

4. Continue doing the right kinds of meetings.

Do not use the first three steps above to avoid the right kinds of meetings. Continue regularly meeting with direct reports, key staff, and upcoming leaders. I suggest a weekly team meeting, a one on one meeting perhaps every other week with each of you direct reports, and a strategy for developing new leaders. The key is to do the right kinds of meetings as much as possible and not waste time in meetings that are not profitable.

What else have you learned in this area? Feel free to comment.

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Posted by Brian Howard

My focus is to help YOU move forward one step at a time. I write about church excellence, personal productivity, and family leadership. I coach leaders, start churches, and help organizations break growth barriers. My goal is to draw on this experience to help YOU move forward in life, leadership, and productivity.