So here’s a video of Jason Fried from 37 Signals (go Chicago!) I’ve always been a fan of these guys and this is why.
Listen to what Jason talks about here:
Simplicity. Small Teams. Less Control. Clear Communications. Less Noise.
“Collaboration is about communication. It’s not about control”
“Interruption is the biggest enemy of collaboration—people need to be left alone to do their work.”
“We work in separate corners in the office and it actually allows us to get stuff done.”
“We think meetings are toxic.”
“The more meetings you’re having, the more problems you’re having”
“Meetings are about words, documents and things that create the illusion of agreement.”
“If you’re going to have a meeting—point to something real.”
“When someone wants to go for the best, they go with a small team.”
Jason brings up some good food for thought. So are we all going to ditch meetings in our corporate environments? Not likely—but if we are the ones calling the meetings, we can do a lot more to make them productive.
A meeting is not collaboration. It's a meeting.
I’m with Jason on bringing real things to meetings—making them more tangible. Having a laptop handy with a projector ready is a good way to pull up an artifact or something you’ve seen on the Web to help make an abstract point more concrete. Small considerations like this help make meetings more effective.
BTW, if you are curious about their name, it comes from a scientific fact that out of all the signals recorded from outer space, 37 of them cannot be explained.