Archive for November, 2012

Things To End All Team Meetings With: Props & Who Needs Help

November 24th, 2012

Every team meeting I run has a beginning and an end. Every single one. It's like bookends to a big row of books. There's one at the start, and one at the finish. It's real important. Without the bookends, the books would flop around all over the place falling off the shelf like a sloppy mess. And no one likes a sloppy mess, whether it's books, your bedroom, your friend on a Friday night, or a meeting. Thank god for bookends.

I've written before about what I think is a great way to open a meeting. Now, let's talk about closing meetings.

Well! Here's what I like to do. Both are real simple, but really cool. I call them:

1. "Props" and 2. "Who needs help!?!?!"

Props is the point in time in the meeting where I ask the team: "Does anyone have props for anyone else on the team?!" To which, my fellow employees are able to call out specific employees within the company to say "Hey, John! I wanted to give you props for doing a great job on X." Or, "Hey Rebecca! I wanted to give you props for doing an unbelievable job on Y." Props is a time for employees to publically recognize people for doing things that were awesome. Typically, these nice things are about projects people are working on cross-department. Sometimes, props may be about someone who really stepped up and hit an important deadline for the company. Other times it's for a coordinated effort around launching a new campaign, or bringing in a new client, or throwing an awesome team party, or cleaning up the awesome team party, or bringing in a new hire, or pushing a really sick update that benefits users, or fixing something that's been broken for a long time. Sometimes, it's about an employee's sweet moustache (sorry Teddie... I know I said I wouldn't). Props is a great way to show someone you've worked with that you think they did a great job on something, enough to want to recognize them publically. I think it can be a really meaningful way to end a meeting. Appreciation. It's one of the most important words I've ever known. Give it a try!

Who Needs Help?!?!
"Who needs help" comes directly after "Props." It is the point in time in the meeting where I ask the team: "K! Who needs help!?! Anyone?" To which, my fellow employees are able to vocalize publically to the team that they need help with XYZ. "Who needs help" is great for providing public accountability with regards to specific projects and specific departments. It is used to help rally the team around specific projects that need to be completed on tight deadlines. For example, it is very common in our line of work at Dailybreak to want to launch a national paid sponsor's challenge quickly so that we can begin recognizing revenue and providing services to our clients and users. "Who needs help" would allow our sales team to publically remind the team that we have a campaign ready to go live on the site and that in order to go live two things need to happen: 1. The development team needs to fix XYZ bug, and 2. The marketing team needs to prepare the email campaign to our existing customer base. "Who needs help" rallies the team around specific missions that are time critical, and it provides accountability due to it's public nature. It's really effective. Give it a try!

That's all peoples! Let me know how it goes! Give me your suggestions, too! I'm all ears.