How to run the perfect meeting

I’ve often said that meetings are like the pigeons in my office – there are too many of them and some of them make me cry. 

In this age of remote working, you better believe that running effective meetings is a priority for companies big and small. Everyone has a philosophy for the ideal meeting: “Keep them short”, “Everybody must stand,” etc. Those may work for some, but as you can imagine, I have my own ways of running a meeting. Without further ado, I present you my 10 rules to make sure that meetings are tolerable (to me).

  1. Nobody should be late but me.
  2. Don’t feel obliged to let someone finish their sentence.
  3. Feel free to zone out periodically, but demand that someone catch you up when you start paying attention again.
  4. On video calls, I don’t need to be on mute – that’s for other people.
  5. Can someone bring me an ashtray please?
  6. 2 to 3 hour meetings without a break? I’m fine with it, especially if you aren’t.
  7. “Sorry, I wasn’t listening” is a totally legitimate thing (for me) to say.
  8. You have another commitment just after this? Let me improvise a long speech then.
  9. I can justify anything, including your disagreement with me.
  10. Someone please write a summary of this meeting that I won’t read.

Everyone and their mother has ideas to run better meetings. I suppose that some of these ideas can co-exist, but I’m quite partial to my own. After all, I’ve been running meetings since I was a young executive in my mother’s womb, and I should let you know that the birth went exactly as planned, on time and on schedule, largely because of my 10 rules.

Gymglish CEO Todd Fakerton

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