Meetings Matter: 8 Powerful Strategies for Remarkable Conversations

Meetings Matter: 8 Powerful Strategies for Remarkable Conversations

by Paul Axtell




Meetings have become a pain point for millions. Many see them as useless sessions that take time away from meaningful tasks. But one consultant with more than 30 years of experience has a different perspective—that meetings matter and can be mastered.

In his new book, Meetings Matter, Paul Axtell emphasizes the importance of meetings, and he redesigns them using the vital foundation of conversation.

With real-life examples and actionable advice, he shows you how to design meetings for results, lead them to achieve agendas that move projects forward, and even allow time to build the relationships that make working together in a remarkable way possible.

This book will revolutionize the meeting--moving it from that dreaded obligation to the most powerful way to get things done in business and in life.

Meetings are at the heart of effective organizations. Each meeting is an opportunity to clarify issues, set direction, sharpen focus, create alignment, and move ambitions forward. We have to change the way we think about meetings--the way we design and lead them and, most importantly, how we manage what happens between meetings.

Axtell offers eight powerful strategies for fixing our meeting problems, and within each strategy, he provides concrete advice you can put into action immediately--such as limiting participants, being vigilant about what gets on the agenda, designing the conversation for each agenda item, and managing the experience for everyone in the room so people leave feeling heard and appreciated.

Further, he explains how meetings can be your primary way to create and maintain your network of relationships.

“We go to meetings. A lot of them,” writes Axtell. “So let's put creating and building relationships in front of us as one of the desired outcomes. What would you do differently if you looked at each meeting as an opportunity to add to your network?”

Wise and well considered, Meetings Matter is a first-class primer not only on remarkable productivity, but on inspiring us to use meetings to build better relationships.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780943097145
Publisher: Jackson Creek Press
Publication date: 01/20/2015
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.40(d)

About the Author

Paul Axtell provides consulting and personal effectiveness training to a wide variety of clients, from Fortune 500 companies and universities to nonprofit organizations and government agencies. A large focus of his work is how to run effective and productive meetings; to turn them from the calendar items that so many dread, into useful, productive sessions with measurable results.

Paul has an engineering degree from South Dakota School of Mines and an MBA from Washington University in St. Louis. He has ten years of engineering and manufacturing experience and fifteen years of experience in corporate personnel and training. The last twenty years have been devoted to designing and leading programs that enhance individual and group performance within large organizations.

He is the author of Ten Powerful Things to Say to Your Kids: Creating the Relationship You Want with the Most Important People in Your Life, which applies the concepts of his work to the special relationships between parents and children of all ages. Thus far, it has been translated into Korean, Vietnamese, Chinese, Arabic, French, and Spanish.

He is also the author of Being Remarkable, a small but power-packed collection of action items--gleaned from more than thirty years of coaching people toward greater personal effectiveness--aimed at developing the awareness that is the beginning of true and lasting change.

Table of Contents

Foreword xi

Preface xiii

Acknowledgments xvii

Introduction 1

Strategy 1 Choose the Perspective: This Matters 13

Strategy 2 Master Effective Conversation 23

Strategy 3 Create Supportive Relationships 43

Strategy 4 Decide What Matters and Who Cares 67

Strategy 5 Design Each Conversation 83

Strategy 6 Lead Meetings for Three Outcomes 119

Strategy 7 Participate in Meetings to Add Impact 165

Strategy 8 Build Remarkable Groups 191

The Art of Learning to Be Effective 211

Guidelines for Managers 231

Dealing with Ineffective Behavior in Meetings 261

Appendix A Tailored Designs 277

Appendix B Relationship-Building Exercises 291

Appendix C Assessment Tools 301

Appendix D Tools for Continued Exploration 309

Bibliography 337

Index 341

About the Author 347

What People are Saying About This

Aaron L. Wetzel

Working with Paul has greatly improved the performance of my entire organization.... In today's matrix environments, the ability to have productive and efficient meetings is critical to the success of the business. --Aaron L. Wetzel, Vice President Global Crop Care Platform, Deere & Company

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