Every company needs to have meetings whether or not they are following the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS) structure. During these meetings, you may wonder what still needs to be done or feel like the meeting is a waste of time. Imagine what would happen if a meeting you went to started on time, ended on time, and you had a clear-cut path on how to move forward to be more productive?
We talked about the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS), how companies like True use it, and setting goals that matter, but how does it apply to meetings? In the final installment of our three-part series, we take a deeper look at how to create and execute meetings, so they can be more productive.
It is essential for a successful meeting to include an outline of topics to discuss, but how is that achieved through EOS?
The Level 10 (L10) Meeting is one of the core tools of EOS designed to help a company’s leadership team remain aligned, engaged, and on-track toward achieving organizational goals and priorities, all while being focused on the company’s vision. The meeting follows a structured agenda, is held the same day and time each week and starts and ends on time.
A successful L10 meeting is rated a “10” by team members for productivity and effectiveness on a scale of 1-10.
It creates a forum for members of the team to share good news, report on key metrics tied to organizational objectives and progress toward established goals, share key headlines and news, and most important, identify, discuss, and solve (IDS) key issues in order of priority.
The Level 10 Meeting has been a game changer for our team at True through the structure, focus and accountability it provides our team members. We have implemented the L10 Meeting format for our weekly management meetings, regular internal department meetings and 1:1 check-ins with team members and some clients.
The bulk of the time in the L10 meeting should be spent on IDS (identifying-discussing-solving) issues. As issues come up through reporting or sharing headlines, they are “dropped down” to the Issues List and discussed only when you get to the IDS portion of the agenda. This prevents tangents from occurring early in the meeting and ensures you remain focused.
When you get to the IDS portion of the meeting, the team reviews the Issues List. You should go through a process to sort the issues in order of priority first. Then, tackle one issue at a time. Discuss the issue candidly. Ensure you’ve identified the true root issue at hand. Then, discuss ways to solve it. Sometimes issues are resolved through discussion; the issue itself may just be a matter of updating or informing the team on some news. Other times, an issue is resolved through simply assigning a to-do for one of the team members.
Not all issues are fully solved within one meeting. Some require multiple next steps, but the purpose of the discussion is to identify the appropriate next step toward solving the issue and to assign accountability. Continue to discuss until that next step is identified and the issue remains on the Issues List until it is fully resolved.
Work through one issue at a time, you may only get through one or two issues in any meeting. However, sticking to this process ensures you’re focused on tackling the most pressing issues and taking the appropriate steps to solve them for the last time.
Setting a regular time and day to meet is a start to having productive meetings. EOS recommends a weekly meeting pulse to ignite a spark of productive activity 52 times per calendar year. The most effective length of time for a productive meeting is between 60 – 90 minutes.
Incorporating L10 meetings doesn’t have to be overwhelming if you are just starting to adopt EOS. Read Traction. by Gino Wickman. This book provides a very helpful outline of how to implement the L10 successfully for your organization. Consider implementing the L10 for one of your key organizational meetings. Perfect it, and then roll it out in other areas. We started with our weekly management team meeting and branched out from there.
Follow the rules and structure to a T. It will take time and practice, but after a few meetings, your team will begin to get the hang of it and reap the benefits. You’ll notice that you’re holding each other accountable and being honest in your meeting ratings as well. Have candid conversations about how you can continue to make the meeting more productive and effective.
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