The current trend in society is very anti-meeting. Lots of people perceive meetings as a gigantic waste of time that can be avoided through the use of technology. I am not one of those people. I think meetings are critical in developing the chemistry of any group of people. This is even more true in high pressure positions like coaching. I do agree that many meetings are not run efficiently and tend to go too long without any real sense of purpose.
3 Rules for Creating Productive Coaches Meetings
Rule # 1
The first rule for having a productive coaches meeting is to have a purpose. Too many times people have meetings because they feel like they need to have a meeting every week. Nothing can drain a staff of enthusiasm and energy than a meeting that could have been avoided. I understand, and believe in the need to see each other regularly, especially over the off-season. I think this can be a critical part to keeping the chemistry from the season but to have a meeting just to see each other is not the best way to do this. If you are have a situation where you need all of the staff in the same room together for the social purpose, make that the goal of the activity. A coaches dinner where everyone gets together and eats and talks will accomplish the goal while building moral.
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Rule # 2
The second rule for having a productive coaches meeting is to set an agenda. There must be a concise list of the things you want to talk about. Without this the conversation can wander which will lead to everyone’s time being wasted. This isn’t to say there can be tangents, coaches meetings shouldn’t be an all business type of affair, but you should stick to the agenda to keep things moving.
Rule # 3
The third rule for productive coaches meetings is to have a hard end time. There is a principal call Parkinson’s Law which says that any task will expand to the time that is given to complete this task. By setting a firm ending time you force the staff to work within that time constraint to accomplish the goals of the meeting. This keeps you moving along and helps to minimize tangents. This also plays to the idea of diminishing returns. The concept of diminishing returns is that after a certain point, the more you do a task the less benefit you will get from it. A focused hour long meeting to set the week’s agenda has a huge return contrasted to a 5 hour meeting where you waste considerable amounts of time is the best example of diminishing returns.
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Coaches meetings are critical to keep everyone on the same page, motivated, and ready to attack the day in front of them. As a coach it’s critical that you keep these meetings concise so that they do not eat into the time of your already overworked staff.