One of the benefits of picobusinesses is the lack of meetings – if you’re working at something part time, by yourself, meetings are not really required.
Of course, as you gain success, you’ll need to start having meetings, and that’s when things start to go downhill.
One of the ways that I’ve had success is applying the principles of the Scrum Project Management methodology to other types of meetings. Specifically:
- Keep the meetings short (15 minutes)
- If you’re late, you’re fined a dollar, which are saved up and donated to charity or used to buy icecream for everyone or such
- Anyone can attend
- Only people directly committed to the project can speak (Others wait until after, or speak if asked a direct question)
- Each person is asked three questions:
- What did you do yesterday?
- What are you going to do today?
- What are your blockers?
The timeframe keeps the meeting short and sweet, keeps it focused, and keeps it from being a huge energy suck. The ability for anyone to attend keeps it honest, and allows people who are interested to be involved, without allowing them to muck with the project during the meetings. The 3 questions cut to the root of what’s important to the project, and don’t let extraneous things get in the way. The dollar fee makes everyone pay attention to the timing, and shows respect for everyone else’s time.
Will it work in all situations? Of course not. But it works in many more than you might expect.
(Hat Tip: 37 Signals)