Many of my business clients report that an average day is spent going from meeting to meeting. Some would say that half of their life is spent attending, conducting, preparing or following up from meetings. It would therefore seem sensible to assume that if you want to build more positivity in your workplace, a good place to focus would be in the way meetings are conducted.
In our last blog post, we reported research that linked positivity in a team with the incidence of positive statements made, the degree that the statements are about others and the amount of questions that are exchanged among group members. Here are some tips that may help you put this into action during the meetings you lead.
1. Open each meeting asking for recent accomplishments. “What has happened that you feel good about and want others on the team to know?” In my experience this type of question elicits the telling of stories that help to build a group’s sense of success.
2. Have a standing agenda item – “Way to go!”. Ask for people to share personal compliments for others who have demonstrated collaboration or some other high-priority behavior. In a local medical-surgical nursing unit, this tip is being used to increase the level of coordinated care provided to patients. Compliments help to remind us of our strengths and create stronger relationships with others.
3. Periodically, use a portion of a meeting for everyone to have 5-10 minutes to check in with every other member. These “Check Ins” can be structured to cover a specific set of questions aimed at increasing connectivity and positive regard: What is going well in our relationship? What strengths have I noticed you exhibiting? What can we create that will enhance our effectiveness?
In future posts we will be offering tips about how to increase inquiry in your teams. What can you share to get us started?