I recently ran across an article in Inc. about the three questions that Oprah uses to start all her meetings and ensure the meeting purpose is clear. When I work with leaders and teams I always try to emphasize the power of clarity when it comes to all communication, and meetings are a great opportunity to create/reinforce clarity and avoid confusion.
High performers constantly seek clarity. They work hard to sift out distractions so they can not just focus, but continually re-focus, on what is important.
That’s because clarity isn’t something you get. Clarity is something you have to seek — you only find clarity and focus when you actively search for it.
-Jeff Haden in Inc.
In addition to having clarity about the meeting purpose, a Table Group best practice is that leadership teams start meetings with a quick review of the answers to the critical questions from Patrick Lencioni’s The Advantage:
Who do we exist?
How do we behave?
What do we do?
How will we succeed?
What is most important, right now?
Who must do what?
It might seem repetitive to review the answers to these questions at the start of every meeting, but it takes just a few minutes and ensures intellectual alignment of the leadership team, so critical to a healthy organization.