Wednesday, March 23, 2016

It's not what you said - it's what they heard

The meeting was sailing along fine.  Decisions were being made, action steps were being documented.

Then all of the sudden - when reviewing a decision I thought was made the month before, a voice spoke up "Wait - I don't think we decided that at all."  Another voice "No, we did."  A second from the table "Yeah, that was decided."

But then another voice said "No, I don't think so."

What went wrong?

Is it because we didn't use Roberts Rules of Order?
Is it because no one read the minutes?
Is it because the last meeting was 3 hours long, and people were tired and didn't catch all the points?

Maybe it's all of the above.

But the bottom line - we left the prior meeting without a concrete understanding - and we lost up to a month on an effort because of it.

What to do?

1. Address the immediate issue.  We came up with a plan of next steps needed to move forward.
2. Address the long term issue.  Maybe the group needs Roberts Rules. Maybe we need a better tool for communication (we currently use a Facebook group).  Or maybe we need to formally adopt Facebook as our communication method.  (A simple check will tell us if people are reading the minutes or not).

Bottom line:  As the leader of this particular group - I don't have to do all the work, but I have to make sure that communication issues like this are handled.

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