Advisor Perspectives welcomes guest contributions. The views presented here do not necessarily represent those of Advisor Perspectives.Dan Richards

A focused, productive meeting with your team is the single most powerful way to start your week. Despite this, many teams don’t have those regular sessions to start the week – and where meetings do take place, they often underperform versus their potential.

For your team to believe that Monday meetings are a good use of their time, those meetings should achieve five goals:

  1. Ensure that everyone clearly understands priorities and goals for the team as a whole in the week ahead and their role in achieving those goals.
  2. Keep lines of communication open, identifying small issues before they become big problems.
  3. Build a performance culture – in which everyone is accountable for delivering on their commitments.
  4. Maintain motivation, so that everyone walks away feeling enthused about the week ahead.
  5. Do this in a tight, focused fashion so that these meetings enhance productivity rather than be a drag on people’s time.

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Tips for an effective Monday meeting

Recently I spoke to an advisor who was struggling with how to make the Monday-morning meetings for his four-person team more effective. Over the years, I’ve talked to many top-performing advisors about how they communicate within their team. Based on those conversations, here’s what I suggested.

Meeting length

Without a firm deadline on length, these meetings drift and lose focus. I recommended that his meetings be scheduled for half an hour with a hard stop after 30 minutes. I spoke to one advisor who was frustrated by the extent to which his Monday meeting had devolved into chit-chat about how people spent the weekend; it’s not that there isn’t place for informal conversations of this sort, but that place shouldn’t be your meeting to kick off the week.

Meeting time

The meeting should be early on Monday but not the very first thing – so say 10 a.m. rather than 8 or 8:30. That way, if someone is held up in traffic, the rest of your team isn’t waiting for a latecomer to arrive.

Keep meetings on track

I suggest a four-part structure for the Monday team meetings, each running six to eight minutes. To help adhere to this timing, use the countdown function on a smartphone, so that if an item has eight minutes on the agenda, people can see how much time is left for discussion. You could also set an alarm, so that you have a warning signal with one minute to go.