From the mailbag, here is an old email given to team members, old and new, pro-tips for how to approach the Tactical meeting every Monday.
If your curious where this comes from, check out the book Death By Meeting, by Patrick Lencioni. His suggested meeting structure mentally optimizes and focuses on the tactical subjects of the week. It’s far too easy to stray into the strategic or get into the weeds, which traditional meetings suffer from.
Here are my tips for team members
1. Lightening Round – Round table allowing 2 minutes per speaker to give what was accomplished last week and what is on your task list for this week.
The lightening round asks two questions: What you got accomplished last week and What you have on your plate for this week.
- Come prepared before the meeting. Don’t muddle through. It’s obvious when it happens and doesn’t reflect well.
- Talk about the top 5 or most significant things you accomplished during this round. Think about your audience and what you would like the team members to know. Especially if it’s project work, client-related work, or tasks of high importance.
- Don’t waste the teams’ time by telling the teams the obvious things, like “Did my security training” or “Cleaned up my tickets”, or “Went to Team Meeting”. This is what is expected of you.
- It’s ok to say “Tickets” and/or “BAU” (Business as Usual). This indicates you were head down focusing on what’s in your queue and don’t have anything of significance to share.
2. Metrics/KPI Review – 10 minutes to review last week’s SLAs and KPI performance.
The teams leaders are responsible for asking team members what is important to measure. If you’ve been asked to create a slide for KPI review, consider these points:
- What is your KPI trying to communicate? What is “good” performance? What is our current performance? State the “good” on your slide.
- Avoid busy or cluttered slides. Jamming a bunch of charts and graphs on your slide does not communicate or relay the message well.
- Don’t “Wing It”. KPIs are designed to get everyone on the teams aligned, goal in hand, and hitting targets. If the KPI isn’t relevant to those ends, then skip it.
- Use KPI’s to communicate problems. Got a particular problem you need to communicate but no one is taking notice? Use KPIs to measure the “bad”.
3. Adhoc-Agenda – Group comes up with an agenda on the spot based on time remaining. Keep topics tactically focused. No strategic discussions during this meeting.
Adhoc is where questions, answers, or announcements that pertain to the coming week are had. Key goals are ensuring alignment and communication between our two teams!
- This is not the venue to vent or rail against “something”. Again, show professionalism by using time wisely, refrain from bloviation, and overly wordy. Straight, to the point, and informative/questioning.
- This is not the venue to challenge or have academic debate. Take those topics offline, if needed.
- Keep Adhoc discussion focused on items needing to be discussed tactically this week. Shift “strategic” items somewhere else and talk to your manager about when/where.
Always forward, team!