Rhythm Blog | Effective Meetings

by Patrick Thean and the Rhythm Team

Value of Outside Facilitation for Quarterly and Annual Planning

Cathy McCullough Wed, Jan 10, 2018 @ 09:00 AM

Unfortunately, I’ve seen leading companies spend (aka “waste”) time in a one or two-day Annual or Quarterly Planning Session. The time is wasted because once they leave the room, they get back to what’s normal (i.e., they get back to putting out fires on a daily basis). As one CEO recently said to me, “We plan, but we never seem to get very far with implementing our plan.” What’s lost when this happens is not only time but focus, productivity, and discipline.

For this CEO, it was at this point in time when he contacted Rhythm Systems to inquire about having a facilitated onsite session.  The session went really well, and the team commented that it was one of the most productive two days they’d spent together in a very long time.

How to Run a Meeting in 6 Simple Steps

Ted Skinner Wed, Dec 13, 2017 @ 11:00 AM

It’s a fact in today’s business world that meetings typically take up a large part of your day. In fact, some days are spent running from one meeting to the next with barely any time to catch your breath! However, I have rarely (okay, never) heard anyone say that these meetings are the best tools to execute against their company’s strategic plans. Well, at least that’s not what they tell me before they come to Rhythm Systems to fix their problems and leverage our unparalleled expertise on how to run meetings that truly work. In fact, so many of our prospects tell us that their meetings have become ineffective, we decided to make a video about it. If you’d like to see what a great cadence of effective meetings can do for you, visit our client page to find out more about what they say after working with us! 

Eliminating Waste: How to Conduct a Meeting Audit

Jessica Wishart Fri, Dec 8, 2017 @ 11:00 AM

Take a look at your calendar. If you’re like most executives, you’re booked up with meetings weeks in advance. As we all know, meetings can sometimes be a real waste of time. At Rhythm Systems, we help our clients establish the right rhythm or cadence of meetings and use best practices to ensure the time spent in meetings is valuable. We believe that our Daily Huddles, Weekly Adjustment Meetings, Monthly Meetings, Quarterly Planning, Annual Planning, and ongoing think rhythms help your company (and each of you) work more effectively, solve problems more proactively, and make critical adjustments so you can achieve success. That being said, you probably have some meetings on your calendar that you wonder, “What’s the point?"

5 Productivity Best Practices to Get More Done with Less Stress

Jessica Wishart Wed, Nov 29, 2017 @ 11:30 AM

 We are rapidly approaching the most wonderful - and busy - time of year. With the holidays and end of year deadlines looming around the corner, many of us are gearing up for a stressful season. Do you wish you and your team could be more productive and simultaneously experience less stress? Does it sound too good to be true? I recently listened to a Vital Smarts webinar on “Getting Things Done: How You and Your Team can Become More Productive and Valuable at Work” that cited research proving there are a few key habits that you can implement to accomplish just that. The research is based on David Allen’s Getting Things Done. According to the research study, people who practice these habits “outperform low performers by 68% and experience less than half the stress." 

4 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Skip the Good News

Jessica Wishart Thu, Oct 26, 2017 @ 11:30 AM

Those of you familiar with our recommended meeting agendas know that we usually like to start most meetings with all team members sharing something positive. Our Daily Huddles, Weekly Adjustment Meetings, Monthly Meetings, and even planning sessions typically include either a round of good news or sharing victories and bright spots as way to kick off the meeting. To some of our more matter-of-fact clients, this can seem frivolous, and they may be tempted to skip this agenda item and move on to the “real” work. But, there’s a method to our madness. We recommend starting with good news for good reasons.

Are You Getting Good ROI on Your Planning Sessions?

Chris Cosper Thu, Oct 12, 2017 @ 11:00 AM

Your planning sessions are important and expensive. Whether they’re Quarterly Planning Sessions, Annual Planning Sessions, or Strategic Planning Sessions, you've invested the valuable time and energy of your most expensive employees – time away from the office,  travel  and meals, a rented meeting room, a professional facilitator, and who knows what else. That number can really add up, so it’s easy to see why this is a line item that sometimes gets cut when trimming the budget. But before you go there, like any other investment decision, you should consider the ROI of that planning session. The basic ROI formula is (Gain–Cost)/Gain. In order to calculate this, you have to really understand what the cost is and what’s at stake.

3 KPIs for A Successful Team

Alicia Croke Tue, Oct 3, 2017 @ 09:00 AM

Every week you sit down with your team and discuss what you need to get done to be effective. How often do you enter the meeting dreading it or leave it feeling burnt out? When you meet with your team, you should focus on fixing problems and not statusing your projects. At Rhythm Systems, we use a few KPIs religiously at our weekly adjustment meetings. Check them out below!

Daily Huddle: The Most Valuable 10 Minutes of Your Day

Chris Cosper Thu, Aug 3, 2017 @ 09:00 AM

So, how’s your Daily Huddle going? Over time, it’s easy for this habit to begin feeling a little stale, and you might even start wondering if anyone would miss it if you killed it. They would! And they probably don’t even realize it (so don’t bother polling the team to ask). Instead, be the leader and huddle on!

Sometimes the benefits of the Daily Huddle are so subtle they go uncelebrated, but the truth is, the habit of huddling daily with your team might be the most valuable 10 minutes of your day. The next time you feel like it’s an inconvenient interruption or someone tells you they’re too busy to huddle, keep these benefits in mind.

5 Steps to Having a Productive Virtual Monthly Meeting

Nicole Hradek Mon, Jul 31, 2017 @ 09:00 AM

Remote workers and companies are becoming more popular these days. In 2015, Gallup reported 37% of workers said they worked remotely, up from just 9% in 1995. How do companies keep their employees updated and also keep the culture alive without having to spend time and money on travel every month? At Rhythm Systems, we decided to have virtual monthly meetings to accommodate those who are unable to fly or drive to Charlotte every month and still keep the company connected and up to date.

Honestly, our first virtual meeting was a disaster! We have about 12 employees who live in Charlotte so we met in the office while the 6 remote team members dialed-in and only used audio. The team in the room fed off of each other’s energy. We were loud, excited, and frankly rude to our virtual coworkers. Since they were not physically in the room, we acted as if they were not even a part of the meeting.

4 Simple Steps to Solve Problems at Your Weekly Meetings

Ted Skinner Thu, Jul 13, 2017 @ 09:00 AM

I hear time and time again from people that their meetings are a complete waste of time. In fact, they can often be a huge productivity killer. When I dig deeper, I can easily find out why. They typically don’t accomplish anything - the team gets together, but they don’t work on solving the problems facing the company. Team members often update the status of their pet projects, highlighting their accomplishments and glossing over the challenges. Many people get the feeling of Groundhog Day as they talk about the same topics time after time and never make any progress on the real, pressing issues facing the company. However, they don’t get the comedic genius of the great Bill Murray to keep them entertained during their meeting. It doesn’t have to be that way. There is a better way to run meetings.