80/20’ing your meetings

I’m a big fan of the Pareto principle. I’m also a big fan of Sturgeon’s law. Both of them boil down to the same idea: most of the value of a set of things comes from a small portion of that set.

Take meetings, for example. There are two ways you could take this:

Both of those are debatable in practice, but it’s a fun exercise in intense intervention. If you have meeting overload, try it:

  1. Add up all the time you spend in meetings in the average week.
  2. Divide that number by five.
  3. That’s the amount of time you’re allowed to spend in meetings for the next week. Choose your meetings wisely to fit within that allowance.

So if you have 30ish hours of meetings a week, you’re allowed 6 hours of meetings next week. What would you drop? What would you keep? What would you shorten?

Why not go ahead and do those things now?

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