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Avoiding Creating A Meeting Culture

Are you meeting with your sales staff just to meet?

On subjects which could have been messaged out through an e-mail or narrowed down to a few, specific people?

Instead, you chose to call everyone together, each morning or week, just to meet for an hour. As if everyone has the same issue to be addressed uniformly.

Why? Because that’s the way its always been done?

Look, anyone could write a blog post on useless meetings. They occurred rampantly regardless of the industry. Its one thing when you have all of the legal or compliance folks in a room, they have windows of time that can be blocked out for meetings.

But with sales staffs, not so much.

There are only a certain amount of hours within the day to reach people. Blocking those times out for another meeting to talk about why the refrigerator isn’t being cleaned out or who keeps jamming the copier isn’t the logical.

Yet, it happens all of the time.

One of the main issues with useless meetings is that everyone on a sales staff is lumped together to receive the information. And there are also too many people in the room who really don’t have an opinion worth expressing, yet they offer it up anyway. This wastes valuable time that could be better served selling and driving revenue.

If you’re a sales manager and you’ve been subjecting your team to this, you’ve created a meeting culture.

Look in the mirror and evaluate, is this what you want your staff to be preoccupied with?

Meetings tend to lump everyone together as well. There are no “C” player meetings where the sales manager says they get a little more training or its time to get their exit interview with HR. Nope, meetings pull “A” players off the sales floor, to build “teamwork,” removing the “A” player from the very thing that they should be concentrating on: Sales.

There is a large disparity in why meetings matter. Personally, I believe the majority of them are a relic of the 1950s business culture, prior to smart phones and e-mail accessible from anywhere.
Meetings also tend to convince “C” players that they are working, since they have blocked out time for a meeting. Thus the “C” player feels productive, as if something good came out of it. What the meeting generally does produce, though, is a way to waste time.

This doesn’t mean that I don’t believe some meetings aren’t important. Especially if meetings solve something crucial to drive in more revenue. But the majority of the meetings held do not.

Every sales manager should ask themselves a key question:

What production or result will come out of this mass meeting of sales staff?

If there isn’t a solid answer, or a result which can ever be shown, then the meeting is a wasted effort and shouldn’t happen.

Results matter. Numbers don’t lie.

But a meeting culture does exactly that, lie about what it produces in terms of results.

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