How to end meetings

From How to End Every Meeting by Ev Williams:

End every meeting with a “closing round.” In a closing round, you go around the room and give everyone a chance to comment on the meeting. There is no discussion or back-and-forth allowed. People tend to talk for less than 30 seconds (often a lot less), so you could close a large, 10-person meeting in less than five minutes.

The closing round is worth doing, because it gives everyone, in a sense, a “last word”—the chance to get something off their chest that they might otherwise carry around or whisper to their colleagues later. It creates more mindfulness about what just happened—and how things might go better next time. And it lets you know where the group is at emotionally, as well as potential issues to follow up on that weren’t strictly part of the proceedings. Above all, closing rounds are usually fun and positive.

Notes: (1) This provides instant feedback for the person running the meeting. Feedback loops are highly valuable. (2) I’m not a fan of meetings of more than 2 people. Better to avoid large meetings altogether than fix them. Here’s why.

2 thoughts on “How to end meetings

  1. I like the idea but find the restriction of ” There is no discussion or back-and-forth allowed” to be hard to practically implement. If you allow people to speak their mind and introduce new ideas/comments, then naturally people will want to respond and may even use their 30 seconds to do so.

  2. Pingback: If you have to have group meetings, do them like this | A Founder's Notebook

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