Three-Step Communication Process to Increase Meeting Productivity When There’s an Elephant in the Room
No matter how well you’ve planned a meeting, if there’s a proverbial elephant in the room, meeting productivity suffers if you don’t take time to acknowledge competing concerns.
Acknowledge any competing concerns that may exist before starting a meeting. Do this by using the following three-step process:
- Acknowledge the Elephant
- Provide a Path
- Regroup and Execute
For example, if your company was just acquired by another and everyone is worried about job security, you could say:
Step 1: Acknowledge the Elephant
“I realize that [topic of meeting] isn’t at the forefront of our minds today with the recent acquisition. Just like you, I’m worried about what this will mean for my job and all of our futures.”
Step 2: Provide a Path
“Nonetheless, we have a job to do now, and this issue needs our attention. For now, let’s focus on [topic of meeting] and we’ll designate another time to talk about acquisition concerns.”
(If you need to do this immediately because of a sensitive issue occupying minds and energy, get the time penned in right then and there.)
Step 3: Regroup and Execute
“Now that we have a time and space to talk about the acquisition, let’s get back to the task at hand, [topic of meeting], and have a productive meeting.”
(Then, continue on with the meeting agenda that you diligently set and distributed prior to the meeting.)This entry was posted in Communication, Leadership, Meetings, Productivity. Bookmark the permalink.