We’ve all been there. Co-workers streaming into the room, coffee in hand, looking for a comfortable chair while everyone waits for the stragglers while also waiting for the convenor to kick things off.
Another seeming endless ‘meeting’ that was called to brainstorm a concept or share a news update. 90 minutes later, you’re shaking your head wondering why the meeting didn’t finish 75 minutes ago!
The problem is ‘people’ and the solution lies in the two pizza rule. Quite simply, the bigger the attendance, the longer the explanations, the more questions (often repetitive), the more alternative suggestions pushed forward (sometimes valuable but most often coming from the least informed) and the more disruptive ‘chit-chat’ among attendees!
Sure, meetings are a regular and necessary feature in any organizational setting. They’re meant to promote dialogue, enhance collaboration and facilitate decision-making processes.
But, in many instances, meetings can turn out to be counterproductive and frustrating. In fact, its not uncommon to hear people say that they would rather avoid meetings altogether
This is because meetings can take ón a life of their own and, instead of being productive, become a source of stress and wasted time.
- 1 The Two Pizza Rule
- 2 And that’s why small teams can mean big gains.
- 3 Want even faster meetings?
- 4 A Simple (Proven) Recipe for That Two Pizza Meeting…
The Two Pizza Rule
Jeff Bezos is known for many things, but perhaps his most intuitive is the ‘two pizza’ rule.
Yep, the founder of Amazon came up with the two pizza rule, which says that collaborative teams inside a company—even one as large as his—should be small enough to be satisfied with two pizzas.
And according to Justin Welsh, this simple concept can apply to smaller businesses or solopreneurs, too… especially if you want to be effective without hiring or stretching your budget.
Justin applied Bezos’s rule to his own company. Here are some of the ways it helped him:
#1 – Agility
Smaller teams can make quick and effective decisions without getting stuck in bureaucratic bottlenecks. … which helps you make better decisions and adapt to your ever-changing environment more quickly.
#2 – Communication
Fewer people, less noise. Exchanging information and ideas becomes smoother.
#3 – Focus
Too many “cooks in the kitchen” stretches your time and focus in multiple directions. With a smaller team, you can allocate resources efficiently and move important projects forward.
#4 – Relationships
By having fewer collaborators, you make deeper connections and better harness the strengths and weaknesses of each. This leads to more trust, loyalty, and ultimately, success.
#5 – Accountability
The smaller the group, the more accountability. Nobody can hide, and collaborators are incentivized to bring their A-game every day. It can also keep the entire team moving forward, because nobody wants to “lag behind” and or become the bad egg on the team.
#6 – Innovation
Small teams are flexible and can easily test new processes and ideas, which can improve productivity and keep you ahead of other businesses.
And that’s why small teams can mean big gains.
Even if you have dozens of collaborators, you can still segment them based on the two pizza rule for smoother performance. So organize your teams accordingly and keep winning. It works – trust us.
Material Source: Stacked Marketer
Want even faster meetings?
I’ve been in business for more than 50 years. I’ve attended countless meetings – large and small. I’m a great believer that a good meeting is a quick meeting. I’ve learned three very successful keys to achieving that quick meeting.
No coffee or tea!
The No. 1 key is ban both coffee and tea. Anyone arriving with either is ‘digging in for the duration’.
Remove all seating!
Key No. 2 is standing room only! As soon as people sit, they start to feel comfortable. Keep meetings productive, not comfortable!
Start on time!
If a meeting has been called for 10:30, start at 10:30. Don’t wait for stragglers. Waiting punishes those that arrived on time and rewards those who come late. Before you know it, everyone will start arriving on time!
A Simple (Proven) Recipe for That Two Pizza Meeting…
Make sure there is a clearly defined agenda
A big reason why meetings are often unproductive is that they lack a clear purpose or agenda. When people gather without a clear objective, they tend to meander, and the conversation becomes circular.
Participants end up talking at cross-purposes, and nothing substantial is accomplished.
Be fully prepared
Another big contributor to unproductive meetings is a lack of preparation. If you want a short, sharp, productive meeting, everyone, including you, needs to be prepared. Ideally, email participants clear-cut agenda telling them both the purpose and the expected outcome.
Listen for quality input versus noise
Another challenge that plagues meetings is the tendency to cater to the loudest voices in the room.
You’ve been there… someone dominates the conversation without allowing others to voice their opinions. This can create an atmosphere of frustration and even intimidation and fear. People hold back on sharing their thoughts and ideas. The group misses out on valuable contributions. The result is that the decision-making process is compromised, and the outcome is less than satisfactory.
Set a time to finish!
When meetings are too long (or too frequent), people tend to lose focus and interest. They become distracted, and their attention wanders. This leads to a lack of engagement, and the outcome is often disappointing.
By setting a firm timeframe for your meeting – together with a clear agenda – participants will be more focussed and ready to contribute.
Is the meeting really necessary?
Before calling a meeting, ask yourself it’s really necessary. Sometimes it’s far more productive to simply get up and go talk to the those with a vested interest in the decision. Often, that’s as few as two or three people.
Do you need Domino’s number for those two pizzas?