Run Meetings Like a Super Villain


How many times have you sat through a meeting that just dragged on and on…and on? Nothing was getting accomplished and half the people were not even paying attention, checking emails on smart phones under the table or just blatantly paying attention to the tablet or laptop propped up right in front of them? If you are like me, then the answer is far too often!

Movies, on the other hand, are amazingly efficient. There is no time wasted on drudgery or banal activities. Dialogue is snappy and to the point and even the most complicated of discussions is resolved in a few minutes at most.

Perhaps the most efficient are the movie villains. Villains have a clear goal, usually the destruction of, or ruling of, the Earth. Little time is wasted on pointless meetings or discussions that do not immediately forward their evil plans.

In fact, if you want to be more productive, take a few pointers from Super Villains on how to run your meetings.

1.      Have an exotic location. You may not need to travel overseas or hold the meeting in some secret underground lair, but do make sure the meeting is set up to be comfortable with room and chairs for everyone involved. If you are using presentation tools, such as PowerPoint, or whiteboards, make sure everything is in place and working. You’ll never see a master villain foiled by his own demonstration.

2.     Skip the fluff. Nothing is more annoying than one person sidetracking a meeting with his or her own personal agenda or just eager to hear themselves talk. Keep everyone on track and on target.

3.     Risk of death keeps everyone in line. We’ve all seen the movies where one of the wayward baddies runs into a sticky end once uncovered. Your company HR director will likely object if you start electrocuting your staff or feeding them to crocodiles through a trapdoor in the conference room. However, you can hold people accountable if goals are missed or work not done.

4.     No distractions. It is hard to imagine a villain such as Blofeld, from the James Bond realm, putting up with his team reading emails or texting while he is explaining his plan to rule the world or knock-off Fort Knox. Put a quick end to the distractions (see rule #3 above).

5.     Focus on outcome. Bad guys and gals do not waste time vacillating or hesitating over decisions. Analyze the data and potential risks and then move forward on the agenda with 100% of your efforts.

6.     Decisions followed to the “T”. Or else…(see rule #3).

7.     White cat is optional. Even the most evil of villains has a human side. It is okay to let that show, at least in moderation, in front of others. After all, Blofeld always had his fluffy cat with him.

That should do it. Oh yeah…now go out and conquer the world – or at least your competition!

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