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productive meetings

Another good habit to get into is to have regularly scheduled meetings on at least a weekly basis. We further recommend that you hold these meetings in an undisclosed location at an undisclosed time (even if your TA takes points off on your M3 grade because you refused to tell him/her where and when your meetings will be held). A typical team meeting went something like this...

The meetings often began with everyone being upbeat and wanting to accomplish a lot. The start of the meeting is very important because that's when we outlined exactly what we wanted to get done during that meeting. It's a very good idea to have a clear picture and strong sense of direction during a meeting to minimize distractions.

As the meeting draws on, however, people inevitably get bored and distracted, and even fall asleep. The team member pictured here fell asleep at our very first meeting, and he hasn't woken up since. Sadly, we had to kick him out of our team. Don't let this happen to you. If the meeting starts to drag on, and you don't feel like you're accomplishing anything, take a break, walk around, talk about something else.

If, however, you refuse to take the advice above and decide to continue with the meeting, things may take a turn for the worse. People may become irritable and even belligerent, as shown in this real-time depiction of Alex doing his best impression of Homer Simpson on Dano.

Following the hostilities there should always be an all-important cooling down period. Behold the ultimate in slacking off as Michel and Dano participate in an activity having absolutely nothing to do with the task at hand. Although this malfeasance may seem like a waste of time, it will pay off in the end because you will be in a better mood and ready to move on with the meeting.

Eventually, we would accomplish everything we set out to. Everyone would have a clear idea of what they were supposed to accomplish during the week. This is the end result. Paradigm shifting at its finest!


Team meetings are what you make of them. If you're having a meeting just because you think you should, then you likely won't get anything out of it. If, however, you come into a meeting knowing what you want to accomplish, and you have someone leading to keep everyone on track, meetings can be one of your most valuable resources throughout the course of the project. Without effective Cabinet meetings, do you think MVB would've been half the President he was? Of course not. The same can be said for team projects: the way you hold your meetings can make or break your team.

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