So if any of you have spent time around Patrick Thean or read his book Rhythm, you have heard him use the term “minor major.” It refers to the small adjustments you make that have a large impact. I participated in a call today with an associate who described how to prepare for weekly meetings and realized he did not use the same convention I use when I coach clients to prep for their weekly meetings. We had a good conversation afterwards and agreed on the impact of making this minor change.
One of the reasons weekly meetings using the Rhythm Program go so smoothly is that we coach our clients to have a meeting with themselves each week before the weekly meeting with their team. This meeting with yourself takes about fifteen minutes. While doing so, we ask them to add comments to any item, be it a KPI or priority, that is statused red or yellow. Most people add comments but simply state the issue at hand.
The minor major is to use the following convention when commenting on yellow or red priorities or KPIs:
Week #: Why – the item is statused red or yellow. What – is the adjustment to be made or solution to get back to green as soon as possible.
The minor difference here is rather than just stating what the problem is, you are developing a possible solution before the meeting. It may be necessary to confer with other members of your team or individuals outside your organization. The key is that you arrive to your weekly meeting with a possible solution in hand. Weekly meetings are not intended to be report out or status meetings, but rather meetings to work on areas that need adjustments and to develop action plans for a successful path forward.
It is then up to the team to have a rich discussion on the solution to ensure they are confident in the approach and that the adjustment will yield the necessary results.
You may not be able to come up with the “what” in all cases, but at least being in the habit of commenting in the “why is it red or yellow” and “what am I going to do about it” format will cause you to come to the meeting more prepared to work with your team to develop a solution.
By coming to the meetings prepared and with possible solutions, the meetings run much more smoothly and there is time to work on the items that really require the team’s attention.
As a guiding rule, 80% of the weekly meeting should be spent on making adjustments and finding solutions to the items that are not on track for the week.
There may be instances where you need to take the conversation off line and set up a follow up meeting. The main point is to spend the time needed to move your KPIs and priorities back to green.
So, look at how your team is prepping for their weekly meetings and determine if everyone is coming as prepared as they should. Doing so will make your meetings run more efficiently, smoothly and timely.
Good luck and please share any other minor majors you have found to help run effective weekly meetings.
Execute well, Alan